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Another 20 years on Gullfaks

August 23, 2006, 01:30 CEST

The Gullfaks field in the North Sea has been producing for 20 years, and according to the original expectations, it should have been shut in by now. But Statoil aims to operate the field for at least 20 more years.

Lars Christian Bacher, senior vice president for the Tampen business cluster in Exploration & Production Norway (UPN), said this at a press conference during the Offshore Northern Seas (ONS) oil show in Stavanger today, 23 August.

"Twenty years of production has provided earnings of about NOK 500 billion, but we will also create value for our owners and society for a long time to come," said Mr Bacher.

Statoil is presently drilling the 50th exploration well on Gullfaks. Albitt and Biotitt are the two prospects being studied. They lie in a formation where oil has been proven earlier and their closeness to the Gullfaks C platform means that a find could be brought on stream very quickly.

The ambitious drilling programme on Gullfaks has contributed to the field's positive reserve replacement ratio, with proven oil and gas reserves exceeding those recovered, over the past three years.

Mr Bacher is very optimistic about the future of Gullfaks. Statoil has plans to explore more than 50 potential discoveries in the area and if finds are made, they can be tied back to the field.

"All of these possible finds in known areas around Gullfaks strengthen our faith in the future of Gullfaks," said Mr Bacher.

Statoil has started assessing the changes that will have to be made if production is to continue for another 20 years.

"We have gained unique expertise through 20 years of Gullfaks experience," Mr Bacher notes.

"The combination of new technology and a highly motivated and enthusiastic organisation means that we can look forward to exciting times ahead.

"Let there be no doubt – this team does not do things by half measures."

Gullfaks A
Photo: Øyvind Hagen, Statoil

Gullfaks B
Photo: Øyvind Hagen, Statoil

Gullfaks C
Photo: Øyvind Hagen, Statoil