Goods and services worth NOK 40.7 billion were purchased by Statoil last year, a decline of 10 per cent from the 1997 record.
The bulk of this procurement - 62 per cent - related to upstream operations, while the downstream side of the business accounted for 30 per cent and other activities for the rest.
NOK 8.1 billion was spent in 1998 on goods and services for Statoil's Åsgard development in the Norwegian Sea, including NOK 4.7 billion devoted to expanding the Kårstø gas treatment plant north of Stavanger to handle output from this field.
A NOK 1.5 billion drilling contract awarded to Maersk Contractors Norge for the Huldra project in the North Sea ranked as the largest single order placed by the group last year.
And contracts worth a combined NOK 1.2 billion were placed with Helikopter Service and Norsk Helikopter for offshore air transport services.
"Much of our procurement concerned tie-ins to existing field installations and transport systems," explains adviser Odd M Instefjord in the corporate procurement and industry relations department. "Examples were the Gullfaks and Heidrun satellites."
Another case in point is the NOK 800 million contract awarded by Statoil to Aker Offshore Partner for converting Veslefrikk B as part of the Huldra development.
He emphasises that the overall figure for procurement in 1998 embraces all contracts awarded. Some of the deliveries involved will be made this year or next.
At a time of constantly low oil prices, Statoil is stressing the development of good and cost-effective forms of collaboration with its suppliers, he adds.
"The best way of meeting tomorrow's challenges will be to establish modes of cooperation which can help to develop new technology adapted to today's low oil prices."