Norway’s Ministry of Petroleum and Energy has granted approval for 19 oil and gas projects on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, totaling investments of more than $18.5 billion (NOK 200 billion).
The projects encompass new developments, further development of existing fields, and investments in projects aimed at boosting extraction from current fields.
The approved projects not only aim to sustain production levels from the Norwegian Continental Shelf, but they also hold the potential to generate significant employment opportunities and economic benefits. Collectively, the projects are projected to create approximately 158,000 full-time jobs by the year 2029.
“The implementation of these projects secures jobs, builds competence and provides a basis for further technology development which will be decisive for the development in other industries such as carbon capture and storage, hydrogen, offshore wind, aquaculture and minerals,” says Oil and Energy Minister Terje Aasland.
In the first half of 2020, global oil demand plummeted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, causing substantial uncertainty about future energy developments in Norway. However, temporary changes to the Petroleum Tax Act were introduced to facilitate planned investments by oil companies.
Minister Aasland emphasized not only the job creation benefits of the projects, but also their significance in bolstering Europe’s energy security.
“Norway is the only net exporter of oil and gas in Europe, and by implementing these projects we ensure new production from the latter half of the 2020s, so that we can maintain high Norwegian deliveries,” said Aasland.
The projects approved include Equinor’s Irpa, Verdande and Andvare developments in the Norwegian Sea, as well as others belonging to Aker BP, Wintershall DEA, and OMV in the North and Norwegian Seas.
“We are experiencing a strong demand for oil and gas from the Norwegian continental shelf in the current geopolitical situation,” said Trond Bokn, Equinor’s senior vice president for project development.”
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