StatoilHydro Gets Go-Ahead to Drill 2 Wells in Barents Sea

Petroleum Safety Authority Norway

StatoilHydro has received consent to drill exploration wells 7223/5-1 S and 7223/5-1 A in the Barents Sea. The wells are part of production license 228 and the water depth at the site is 340 meters.

The consent has been granted in part on the basis of documentation submitted in connection with the application for consent, as well as the documentation associated with the Acknowledgement of Compliance for the Polar Pioneer, issued April 6, 2004, with the preconditions and obligations the AoC represents for the owner and Operator.

The Polar Pioneer is a semisubmersible drilling rig built in 1985, designed by Sonat/Hitachi. The rig has previously drilled production wells for Snøhvit and several exploration wells for Statoil, Hydro and Eni in the Barents Sea.

The drilling activity on block 7223/5 is expected to last 55 days, with start-up in November 2008.