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Statoil increases Saga stake

November 25, 1998, 00:00 CET

Stavanger, 25 November 1998

A further 6.19 million shares in Norwegian oil company Saga Petroleum have been acquired by Statoil after the Oslo Stock Exchange ceased trading on 24 November.

This acquisition brings the Statoil group's total holding in Saga to 28.98 million voting shares, or 19. 41 per cent of the stock.

In addition, the Statoil Pension Fund has 0.59 per cent of the voting shares in Saga. Before the latest purchase, the Statoil group's shareholding was 15.26 per cent.

Statoil regards Saga as an interesting financial and strategic investment. Increasing its shareholding in the company creates a better basis for strengthening cooperation between the two, both off Norway and internationally.

Statoil wants to maintain a positive dialogue with Saga over an operative collaboration to reduce costs for both sides, and to improve the profitability of joint operations at a time of low oil prices.

By increasing its stake in Saga to almost 20 per cent, the group has also reinforced the value of its overall holding in the event of a later disposal.

Further information from: John Ove Lindøe, tel: +47 51 99 68 81