Norwegian player expands North Sea footprint after closing Aker BP and Repsol deals

Norwegian Lime Petroleum, a subsidiary of Singapore’s Rex International, has increased its North Sea footprint following the completion of the farm-in process for Aker BP’s two licences and the acquisition of Repsol’s interest in the Brage field.

Brage platform; Courtesy of Wintershall Dea/Morten Berentsen

Originally, the deal between Aker BP and Lime Petroleum was signed in August 2021 for the acquisition of 20 per cent interests in the PL867 and PL867B licenses in the North Sea offshore Norway.

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Rex confirmed in its latest update that the farm-in process for each of the respective licences was completed on 31 December 2021. The completion will have an effective date from 1 January 2021 – standard practice for licence transactions in Norway – and enable Lime to hold 20 per cent interest in each of the two licences.

The licences are adjacent to PL818/B Orkja, in which Lime has a 30 per cent interest and are located just 12km west of the Ivar Aasen field, also operated by Aker BP. The PL867/B Gjegnalunden licences are located in a prolific part of the North Sea in the Utsira High area, in which Lime has significant experience, according to Rex.

Furthermore, the licences contain several prospects, with the Gjegnalunden prospect having the highest priority. Based on Rex’s statement, the exploration drilling of this prospect – targeting a reservoir in the Jurassic section – is likely to start in the second half of 2022, while the success in Gjegnalunden is expected to further decrease the risks associated with other prospects in PL867/B and the adjacent PL818/B.

Lars Hübert, Chief Executive Officer of Lime, remarked: “We are pleased to partner with Aker BP in PL867 and PL867B. We look forward to drilling the Gjegnalunden prospect later in 2022. Farming-in to these licences follows Lime’s strategy of infrastructure-led exploration. Given the proximity to the Ivar Aasen field, a discovery at Gjegnalunden would constitute high-value barrels.”

More North Sea acreage for Lime

Lime Petroleum entered into a conditional sale and purchase agreement with Repsol Norge in June 2021 to acquire its 33.8434 per cent interests in the oil, gas and natural gas liquids (NGL) producing Brage field, and the five licences on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS) over which the Brage field straddles for a post-tax consideration of $42.6 million.

Rex International confirmed last December that its 90 per cent subsidiary Lime Petroleum had received approval from the Norwegian authorities for the acquisition.

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Rex International confirmed on Friday that the acquisition had been completed on 31 December 2021, while the effective date of the completion would be listed as 1 January 2021. In light of this, Lime now holds a 33.8434 per cent stake in the Brage field and the five licences.

Rex’s Norwegian branch completes farm-in process with Aker BP and acquires Repsol’s stake in North Sea field
Brage platform; Courtesy of Wintershall Dea/Morten Berentsen

Located in the northern part of the North Sea, 10 kilometres east of the Oseberg field, the Brage field lies in a water depth of 140 metres. Production at the field started in 1993. The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate believes there are 3.42 million Sm3 of oil equivalent or 21.52mmboe of remaining reserves in the field.

It is worth reminding that the acquisition of the Wintershall Dea-operated Brage field fulfils Lime Petroleum’s ambition to transition from pure-play exploration to a full-cycle exploration and production company on the NCS.