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OIL AND GAS
Norway's Statoil posts production, earnings gains
by Daniel J. Graeber
Washington (UPI) Jul 27, 2017


Statoil starts new production after strong second quarter report
Washington (UPI) Jul 27, 2017 - Production started at a field in the Norwegian waters of the North Sea that holds an estimated 11 million barrels of oil equivalent, Statoil announced.

The Norwegian energy company said its Byrding field started production on time and under budget. The field is located north of the Troll field in the North Sea and investments there were reduced by about 70 percent in part because of assets nearby.

"Good utilization of existing infrastructure has resulted in a cost-effective development that will add profitable resources to the Troll field," Gunnar Nakken, a senior vice president for regional operations, said in a statement.

Oil from the Troll field will be included in the basket that makes up Brent, the global benchmark for crude oil prices, starting next year.

Statoil, which is partially owned by the Norwegian government, closed early this year on an agreement to take on the 25 percent stake in the Byrding field from a regional subsidiary of German energy company Wintershall, increasing its operating interest to 70 percent.

Development plans for operations at Byrding were submitted last year. Any oil and gas pulled from the field would be piped through existing networks. Statoil estimates the field will stay in production for about a decade.

The Norwegian government reported a preliminary rate of oil production at 1.55 million barrels per day, lower than expected. Total oil production to June, however, was 1.3 percent higher than expected, based on the preliminary figures.

Statoil reported adjusted earnings for the second quarter of $3 billion, up from the $913 million reported in the same period last year. The company attributed the gains to strong operational performance, improved production and higher prices for oil and natural gas.

Equity production for the company was about 2 percent higher than second quarter 2016, and it said it expected production growth of around 5 percent for the year.

Norwegian energy company Statoil said Thursday improved market conditions led to a 231 percent increase in adjusted earnings for the second quarter.

Statoil reported adjusted earnings for the second quarter of $3 billion, up from the $913 million reported in the same period last year. The company attributed the gains to strong operational performance, improved production and higher prices for oil and natural gas.

"At oil prices around $50 per barrel, we have generated $4 billion in free cash flow, and reduced our net debt ratio by 8.1 percentage points since the start of the year," President and CEO Eldar Saetre said in a statement.

The Norwegian government reported a preliminary rate of oil production at 1.55 million barrels per day, lower than expected. Total oil production to June, however, was 1.3 percent higher than expected, based on the preliminary figures.

Statoil's equity production was about 2 percent higher than second quarter 2016. The company said it expected production growth of around 5 percent for the year.

For the region as a whole, sector consultant group Rystad Energy, which has headquarters in Oslo, said total production from Western Europe should start to decline starting next year and flatten out at around 6 million barrels of oil equivalent per day by 2021. After that, new gains come mostly from offshore Norway.

From 2020, most of the gains will come from Statoil's giant Johan Sverdrup oil field, one of Norway's five largest offshore oil fields with an estimated 3 billion barrels of oil. For the year, Statoil said its drilled 14 exploration wells and made nine wells, several of which could be turned quickly into commercial operations.

"We expect to drill around 30 exploration wells in 2017," Saetre said.

OIL AND GAS
Philippines to consult ASEAN on joint China sea oil search
Manila (AFP) July 26, 2017
The Philippines tried Wednesday to reassure Southeast Asian neighbours about its proposal to partner with Beijing in oil exploration in the disputed South China Sea, promising to consult them on any plans. President Rodrigo Duterte has softened his predecessor's policy opposing China's claims - which expand to nearly the entire sea - causing alarm among neighbouring Southeast Asian countri ... read more

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