Gina Krog field in the North Sea; Source: Ole Jørgen Bratland/Equinor

Polish player buys its way into Equinor’s North Sea gas field

Norwegian state-owned energy giant Equinor has set the wheels into motion to divest a partial stake in a gas field located in the North Sea, which is expected to extend the life of the Gina Krog field. Thanks to this deal, PGNiG Upstream Norway, part of Poland’s Orlen Group, has expanded its footprint off the coast of Norway.

Gina Krog field in the North Sea; Source: Ole Jørgen Bratland/Equinor

PGNiG is buying Equinor’s 19.5% interests in production licenses PL 1201 and PL 048E, which contains the Eirin gas field situated 250 kilometers west of Stavanger, enabling the duo’s ownership in these licenses to be balanced with the Gina Krog field.

Camilla Salthe, Equinor’s Senior Vice President for Late-life Fields, commented: “Balanced partnerships will make it easier to coordinate decisions in the licences to optimise production and enhance value creation from the area.”

The plan for the development and operation (PDO) of the Eirin field, a subsea tieback to Gina Krog, was approved in January 2024. According to Equinor, the subsea template is under construction in Egersund and is scheduled for installation in the summer of 2024.

The condensate from the Eirin gas field will be exported via a new oil pipeline, which is under construction, from Gina Krog to the Sleipner A platform and the gas will also be transported by pipeline to the same platform for further processing.

Afterward, sales gas will be exported from the Sleipner A facility via Gassled to the market, while unstabilized condensate will be exported to the terminal at Kårstø. The field is expected to contribute to Equinor’s gas volumes from next year.

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Equinr’s emissions from operations on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS) are expected to be curbed by the electrification of the Sleipner field center, as well as activities at the Gudrun platform – where a two-well extension is underway – and other associated fields.

“Together with the electrification of the platform, the Eirin development will extend the lifetime of the Gina Krog field, which supplies gas to Europe with low emissions from production and transport,” added Salthe.

The production license PL 1201 was awarded in this year’s awards in predefined areas (APA) round and Equinor explains that any discoveries in this license could make use of Eirin’s infrastructure and be tied back to the Gina Krog platform.

While the economic effective date for the transfers is January 1, 2024, the closing of the transaction is conditional upon ministry approval. Equinor is working on multiple projects not just in Norway but also elsewhere in the world.

A few days ago, the firm disclosed the departure of its new FPSO from Aker Solutions’ Stord yard. This vessel will move to an oil project in the Barents Sea.

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Equinor also recently announced plans to invest over $1 billion into boosting gas infrastructure in the Troll West area through the second stage of the Troll Phase 3 (TP3 II) project.