Statoil resumes drilling in Plataforma Deltana

August 28, 2006, 09:30 CEST

Statoil has spudded the well Cocuina-2X, as part of the exploration campaign in Block 4 of Plataforma Deltana, located offshore eastern Venezuela.

"Statoil is fully committed to use our activities in Plataforma Deltana as a means to share our broad experience from offshore operations and promote technology transfer to Venezuela. It is our goal to perform the drilling campaign in Plataforma Deltana Block 4 efficiently and under the strictest standards for Health, Safety and Environment", said Thore E. Kristiansen, President of Statoil Venezuela. “More than 500 Venezuelans are employed in this phase of our project”, Kristiansen added.

The Sovereign Explorer rig, owned by Transocean Inc., has successfully completed a 3-month upgrade and renewal programme, as part of the preparations for the re-start of operations in Plataforma Deltana.

Plataforma Deltana Block 4 is a license awarded to Statoil by the Venezuelan government in 2003. Statoil, with a 51% interest, is the operator of the license in which Total has the remaining 49%. PDVSA Gas has the right to acquire a participating interest once a commercial discovery has been declared.

“Statoil is optimistic for the outcome of the exploration campaign. Hopefully we will detect resources that can establish the basis for a new field development”, Kristiansen said.

Statoil has been present in Venezuela for 11 years and participates in Sincor together with PDVSA and Total, the most successful project in the Orinoco Belt that produces, upgrades, and commercializes extra heavy crude oil.