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Norway's Statoil assessing possible aftermath of EU sanctions against Russia

Executives and experts of the Norwegian state oil and gas corporations Statoil ASA are assessing possible aftermaths of the EU sanctions against Russia in the light of the corporation's own cooperation with the Russian oil major, Rosneft, Knut Rustad told ITAR-TASS Wednesday.

Statoil staff is scrutinizing the possible impact of the move on the further operations of the company in general, he said.

Statoil has always abided by the international community's decisions in the sphere in the past but given the current situation, it does not fully figure out the potential aftermaths of the new sanctions in full, Rustad said.

He added that Statoil representatives would not like to express any suppositions on how the EU's decision to restrict exports of oil industry equipment to Russia might affect the company's further activity in the Russian Federation.

Although Norway formally is not a member of the EU, its government traditionally follows the guidelines of a united European policy. Norwegian government has been persistent in observing all the EU decisions on sanctions against Russia to date.

Along with it, the Norwegians have not made any official comments on the EU's decisions so far. A spokesman for the Foreign Ministry said an official statement on the problem would be made within several hours.

An agreement Rosneft and Statoil signed in May 2012 envisions joint operations on the Norwegian continental shelf, as well as joint projects in the Russian sector of the Barents Sea (Perseyevsky license block) and in the Sea of Okhotsk (Kashevarovsky, Lisyansky, and Magadan-1 license blocks).

Statoil plans drilling six exploration oil wells at the four license blocks between 2016 and 2021. It is supposed to cover all the geological surveying costs.

In 2013, the two companies received the right for a joint development of a promising license block on the Norwegian section of the shelf in the Barents Sea.

In addition, they are eyeing possible joint development of Domanic deposits in Russia's Samara regions in the Middle Volga area where they hoped to test production of shale gas and oil.

[Source: Itar Tass, Oslo, 30Jul14]

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