Wintershall wins four new exploration licenses in NorwaySeismic surveys to commence in the next few months
Stavanger / Kassel. The Norwegian energy ministry has awarded Wintershall Norge A.S.A. working interests in four new exploration licenses in the current licensing round, APA 2009. They comprise two new licenses in the Norwegian North Sea, one license in the Norwegian Sea and one license in the Barents Sea for the BASF subsidiary. Wintershall will take over as operator with 60% shares in the license areas PL 550 (Spring 40 %) and PL 551 (Spring 40 %) in the Norwegian North Sea off the coast of Central Norway. Wintershall was also awarded the operatorship for area PL 561 with a share of 35% (Concedo 20%, Det norske 20%, E.ON Ruhrgas 25%). In addition, Wintershall has been granted an interest in license PL 564 (Wintershall 30 %, OMV 50% (operator), North Energy 20%) in the Barents Sea. "With our success in the licensing round we are making significant progress in the implementation of our growth strategy in Norway," Harald Vabø, General Manager of Wintershall Norge A.S.A., explained. With 51 licenses, the company is one of the largest licensees on the Norwegian continental shelf and is the operator of 23 licenses. Harald Vabø announced that they would start work on the four new areas imminently. “Our near term plans include both acquisition of new seismic data as well as reprocessing of old data”.
The Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy issued 38 licenses to 42 companies overall as part of the 2009 licensing round. The majority of the licenses granted apply to the Norwegian section of the North Sea (25 licenses). Another ten licenses were issued for the Norwegian Sea and three for the Barents Sea. Overall 44 companies took part in the bidding process, which is now complete.
The North Sea is one of the traditional core regions of Wintershall. The wholly owned BASF subsidiary has been active there since 1965 and operates 25 oil and gas platforms in the Dutch North Sea and one in the German North Sea. Around half of the natural gas consumed in Europe today still comes from the countries bordering the North Sea: Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark, the UK and Germany.
Wintershall, based in Kassel, Germany, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BASF in Ludwigshafen. The company has been active in the exploration and production of crude oil and natural gas for over 75 years. Wintershall focuses on selected core regions where the company has built up a high level of regional and technological expertise. These are Europe, North Africa, South America, as well as Russia and the Caspian Sea region. Today, the company is Germany’s largest crude oil and natural gas producer, and with its subsidiaries, WINGAS and WINGAS TRANSPORT, it is also an important gas supplier on the German and European market.