Statoil swaps production licenses with Wintershall in a $1.45 billion deal


Statoil swaps production licenses with Wintershall in a $1.45 billion deal

OSLO -- Statoil has agreed to a $1.45 billion deal with Wintershall to swap production licenses on the Norwegian continental shelf, and also to cooperate to increase oil recovery.

As part of the deal, Statoil will leave its 32.7% stake and operatorship of the Brage field to Wintershall. Statoil will also reduce its stake to 15% from 20% in the GDF Suez-operated Gjoa license and to 30% from 54% in the Statoil-operated Vega license.

Statoil will also acquire a 15% stake in the Edvard Grieg license near the giant Johan Sverdrup field on the Utsira High in the North Sea from Wintershall. Wintershall's stake in the field will be 15% after the transaction. Wintershall is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BASF. The Lundin-operated Edvard Grieg field is expected to produce from late 2015, with peak production at about 100,000 bopd.

Statoil said that by acquiring a stake in the Edvard Grieg license, the company will consolidate its position as the largest player on the Utsira High area in the North Sea, owning part of all the oil fields in the area that have not yet been put into production--Johan Sverdrup, Edvard Grieg, Dagny and Ivar Aasen.

Developing the Utsira High area will be one of the major undertakings for Statoil in decades to come, said Oystein Michelsen, Statoil executive vice president for Development & Production Norway.

Statoil said its share of production in the divested assets was 39,000 bopd in the first half of 2012. The deal takes effect from January 1, 2013, and is expected to close in the second half of 2013, pending government approval.

This enables Wintershall to become one of the leading producers in Norway," said Rainer Seele, Wintershall's chairman of the board of executive directors.

The two companies have also agreed to cooperate on research into increased oil recovery and also on unconventional oil and gas. As part of the deal, Statoil will receive a 49% share of Wintershall's German concessions Rhineland and Ruhr.

Dow Jones Newswires

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