In the current licensing round APA 2014, Germany’s Wintershall has been awarded eight new exploration licenses by the Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy. Wintershall will be operator on three of these licenses.
Seven of the new licenses are located in the North Sea (two as operator) and one operated license in the Barents Sea. At present the BASF subsidiary holds about 50 licenses on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, and is operator of more than half of these, making it one of the largest license holders in Norway. Wintershall notes that this figure does not include the new licenses, which will be officially awarded during the course of the year.
Promising licenses – basis for further growth in Norway
“Wintershall has been awarded licenses in very promising areas on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. Our exploration team made strong applications and it is pleasing that the Ministry has once again shown confidence in our ability to explore for hydrocarbons. As one of the fastest growing oil and gas companies in Norway, we are focused on turning our exploration success into developments and production. It is critical that we continue to replenish our license portfolio so that we can continue to operate in this way,” said Bernd Schrimpf, Managing Director of Wintershall Norge.
The APA 2014 licensing round covers an overall surface area of 109,205 square kilometers. It was extended by six blocks in the Norwegian Sea and three blocks in the Barents Sea compared to the 2013 licensing round. Overall 47 companies applied for the licenses.
“In light of the strong competition, we deliberately concentrated on innovative geological concepts and a convincing exploration strategy in our application. What was particularly pleasing was that we were awarded our top ranked areas. The fact that we are one of the most successful exploration companies on the Norwegian Shelf, and that we take a long-term approach to our projects, most certainly also helped,” said Guy Oakes, Head of Exploration at Wintershall Norge.
New Wintershall licenses APA 2014
– North Sea: PL788 (50%) (Operator), PL678 C (35%) (Operator), PL777 (20%), PL778 (20%), PL776 (20%), PL373 BS (20%) & PL787 (30%)
– Barents Sea: PL804 (Operator) (40%).