Wintershall gains go-ahead to drill Barents Sea wildcat

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD), a government agency whose task is to manage the oil and gas resources on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, has granted Wintershall a drilling permit for a wildcat well in the Barents Sea. 

The well 7224/2-1, in production licence 611, will be drilled from the semi-submersible drilling rig Transocean Arctic following completion of drilling of wildcat well 7130/4-1 for Lundin Norway in production licence 708.

Wintershall Norge is the operator of the licence with an ownership interest of 40 per cent. The other licensees are Faroe Petroleum Norge (40 per cent) and Petoro (20 per cent).

According to the NPD, the area in this licence is comprised of the blocks 7223/3, 7223/6, 7224/1, 7224/2, 7224/3, 7224/4 and 7224/5. The well is being drilled about 25 kilometres northwest of the discovery 7224/6-1 (Arenaria) and about 240 kilometres north of Hammerfest.

Production licence 611 was awarded on May 13, 2011 (21st licensing round). This is the first well to be drilled in the licence, the agency said.

The permit is contingent upon the operator having secured all other permits and consents required by other authorities prior to starting the drilling activity.