Meeting future global demand

Terje Riis-JohansenThe world needs more energy to support the economic growth necessary to improve living conditions for people around the world. The 2009 World Energy Outlook published by the International Energy Agency indicates that the world will consume more oil and gas in 2030 than it does today, even in a low carbon emission scenario.


Being a large exporter of both oil and gas, Norway plays an important role as a reliable supplier to the world’s energy markets.  Norway is the  world’s 6th largest supplier of crude oil and 2nd largest exporter of natural gas.


What is probably less well known is that Norway is also a substantial exporter of petroleum related goods and services. The Norwegian based service and supplier industry has grown its international sales by almost 25 percent from 2007 to 2009. International sales have reached a level of almost 120 billion NOK or about 20 billion USD.  Considering the recent turbulence in the world economy, this is quite impressive.


The growth reflects that Norwegian competence and technology are in demand, but it also reflects a growing need for investments in both existing and new petroleum production. Without such investments it would hardly be possible to meet energy demand. I am therefore pleased to see that the Norwegian supply industry is contributing to the exploration and production business worldwide, including markets in far away countries like Australia, Brazil and China.


Norway has strict regulations with regard to resource management, protection of the environment as well as health and safety to ensure that production on the Norwegian Continental Shelf can take place in a sustainable manner.  In the wake of the serious accident in the US Gulf of Mexico this summer, petroleum activities offshore Norway and in other places of the world will be subject to more attention with regard to safety and environmental effects.  Thus, an increased global demand for environmentally friendly goods and services is likely to emerge. In this regard, I am convinced that the Norwegian supply industry can play a constructive part in developing innovative solutions for both cleaner and safer petroleum production.


Another area of significant potential for securing future energy supplies is improved oil recovery (IOR). The average recovery rate is 46 percent on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS), which is quite high compared to other petroleum provinces. In September 2010, I received a report on measures for improving recovery rates on the NCS. The report illustrates that the potential for IOR is considerable, and proposes several measures that could be undertaken to help realize this potential. Moreover, the Norwegian based supply industry will have to play a very important role if we should succeed in this effort.


Given the considerable experience and capabilities that exist in Norway with regard to cleaner production and IOR, it is encouraging to see that INTSOK – Norwegian Oil and Gas Partners – is giving priority to these areas when promoting the Norwegian based supply industry in overseas markets. In both these fields I think the Norwegian oil and gas cluster can make a difference both at home and internationally.


I trust you will find this issue of Norway Exports useful in learning more about the Norwegian oil and gas industry.



Terje Riis-Johansen

The Norwegian Minister of Petroleum and Energy