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Ormen Lange up front at London seminar

October 27, 2005, 16:30 CEST

Tore Torvund, head of Hydro Oil & Energy, focused on technology development during his presentation in London on Wednesday at a conference on cooperation between the Norwegian and UK oil and gas industries. The conference was held in connection with the Norwegian royal family's visit to London this week.

Step by step, Torvund went through the technological development in Hydro and told how the company has continually upgraded its expertise and experience to take on steadily larger and more complex projects.

Development of the Oseberg sub-sea solution paved the way for the TOGI (Troll Oseberg Gas Injection). Expertise accrued through these projects is utilized in the Ormen Lange project, where the entire well stream will be send unprocessed more than 100 kilometers to shore without first going through a platform on the field.

Many at the conference were impressed both by the technological magnitude of Ormen Lange and the fact Norway will supply the UK with one-fifth of its natural gas needs starting in 2007.

Optimistic

The tone throughout the presentations was one of optimism - both for the future of the oil and gas industry as a whole and the industry's ability to tackle challenges concerning new technology for more efficient operation, increased recovery from fields and less environmental impact.

Many expressed concern about dwindling numbers of students interested in petroleum technology and said the industry must work harder with recruitment and generate more interest clear down to the primary school level.

"And we must stop calling the oil and gas industry a dying industry and start referring to it as a space age industry," said Shell's Tom Botts, executive vice president Europe. He used Ormen Lange as a good example of how fascinating technological development and all the exciting tasks associated with it can be.

Other Norwegian speakers included Helge Lund, head of Statoil, and Rasmus Sunde, executive vice president of Vetco. Norway's new oil and energy minister, Odd Roger Enoksen, and Great Britain's equivalent, Malcolm Wicks, concluded the conference with speeches rife with references to the possibilities of cooperation between the Norwegian and UK offshore sectors.

Norway's King Harald, Crown Prince Haakon and UK Prince Phillip participated in the event, which emphasized the warm relationship between the two countries.