The StatoilHydro merger marks a new drive in the development of the Norwegian petroleum cluster. Its first major success was the Shtokman agreement with Gazprom which will allow StatoilHydro a significant role in the development of the giant Arctic gas field. Shtokman can be the catalyst for developing and adopting technologies that will ensure safe and environmentally sound operations in the sensitive Arctic region.
The agreement signed with Gazprom is the result of long and determined efforts from both Statoil and Hydro, actively supported by Norwegian authorities and the Norwegian supplier and service industry that has provided Gazprom with valuable information and an understanding of the challenges of developing the field 550 kilometres from shore. The importance of INTSOK’s Russian – Norwegian partnership program will only be strengthened as a result.
Statoil and Hydro have been partners and competitors on the Norwegian continental shelf for more than 30 years. They have challenged each other and worked closely with Norwegian and international supplier and service companies in developing new technologies. The two companies have been instrumental in supporting the development of 3D, 4D and 4C seismic, tools for horizontal drilling, subsea installations and processing, 3-phase flow simulations and meters, boosting and pumping, intelligent wells and digital oil field technologies.
Hydro’s success in developing the thin oil layer in the Troll Field and the considerable investments in enhanced oil recovery technologies have resulted in substantial financial benefits for the Norwegian society. This experience certainly has a great value for clients and societies abroad. One area of major concern is global climate change where StatoilHydro
can build on its success in separating CO2 from the Sleipner gas and storing it in an under ground reservoir. The removal of CO2 and even the use of it for enhanced oil recovery could become an important tool for battling climate change. The Norwegian continental shelf has become a test ground for new technological solutions which have become benchmarks and are being used worldwide.
For the last 10 to 15 years Statoil and Hydro have been pursuing opportunities abroad. Their merger has strengthened their joint position in West Africa as well as in North Africa. Brazil can become a stronghold for the new company, both in exploration and development. StatoilHydro has also built an exciting portfolio in the Gulf of Mexico. StatoilHydro should have the best foundation for further international growth.
The Norwegian supplier and service industry is well established in Russia and several other markets and has aggressive plans to continue its expansion abroad. With one major Norwegian oil company present internationally, INTSOK will work together with the industry to present our experiences and our technological and environmentally friendly solutions abroad. Good governance, transparency and accountability and a strong stand against corruption will have to be on top of the agenda – in StatoilHydro as well as the rest of the Norwegian petroleum industry.