Statoil plans to increase exploration drilling to 30 wells this year.
This would be a 30% increase on the gas and oil multinational’s efforts in 2016, when the firm completed a total of 23 wells, 14 of them on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS).
These were completed more cheaply and quicker than originally forecast due to efficiency improvements and other market effects, it states.
More than half of the new sites to be installed in 2017 will also be based on the NCS, with some of the others situated in the UK, Brazil, Indonesia, Russia and Turkey.
The plans are still dependent on permits, rig availability and partner approvals but Statoil’s ambition is to prove field volumes to prolong the lifespan of existing infrastructure and determine the potential of future growth and development.
Tim Dodson, Executive Vice President for Exploration in Statoil, said: “Taking advantage of our own improvements and changed market conditions, we have been able to get more wells, more acreage and more seismic data for our exploration investments in later years.
“This allows us to firm up a strong drilling program for 2017, totalling around 30 exploration wells as operator and partner. The upcoming well programme is balanced between proven, well known basins and new frontier opportunities.”
Statoil investigated carbon capture and storage (CCS) opportunities on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS) last year.