Tromsø Patch unitisation

August 8, 2000, 10:00 CEST

The seven licensee groups covering three fields on the Tromsø Patch off northern Norway have concluded a unitisation agreement.

This deal covers the Snøhvit, Askeladden and Albatross gas/condensate discoveries.

The redistribution of interests in the unitised licence gives Statoil 34.29 per cent and the state's direct financial interest (SDFI) 30 per cent.

In addition, TotalFinaElf holds 18.4, Norsk Hydro 10, Amerada Hess 3.26, RWE-DEA 2.81 and Svenska Petroleum 1.24 per cent.

New voting rules have also been established by the group to secure efficient planning and decision-making.

This unitisation will give the licensees a common goal for future work with a Snøhvit development based on gas liquefaction, says Kai Bjarne Lima. He is finance and organisation manager for Statoil's Snøhvit project.

The group originally operated five of the seven licences, and took over the operatorship for the other two last year under an agreement with Hydro. That deal gave added impetus to the unitisation talks.

Proven gas reserves on the Tromsø Patch, which lies in the Barents Sea, are put at 320 billion cubic metres.

A possible development of Snøhvit would embrace subsea production installations, a pipeline to shore and a treatment/liquefaction complex on land. Plans call for gas to start flowing in the autumn of 2006.

The project is aiming to submit a plan for development and operation next summer, reports Mr Lima.

"We recently circulated enquiries to relevant contractors to handle pre-engineering of the land facilities at Melkøya near Hammerfest in Finnmark county," he says.

"A decision on this work is likely to be taken in late October or early November this year."