BP doubles stake in mammoth Culzean oilfield ‘demonstrates N. Sea commitment’ as crude oil price nudges $50-barrel

Mark Thomas, BP Regional President for the North SeaBP has doubled its interest in the Culzean development in the central North Sea off Aberdeen following its acquisition of an additional 16% interest in the field from JX Nippon.  This takes BP’s interest in the development from 16% to 32%.

The Maersk-operated Culzean field development, which was sanctioned at the end of August last year, is expected to produce enough gas to meet 5% of total UK demand at peak production in 2020/21.

Discovered in 2008, the gas condensate field has resources estimated at 250-300 million barrels of oil equivalent. Production is expected to start in 2019 and continue into the 2030s, with plateau production of 60,000-90,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

Mark Thomas, BP Regional President for the North Sea (pictured, above), said: “We are pleased to have deepened our interest in Culzean and we look forward to helping Maersk make this important central North Sea development a success.

“This is a challenging time for the industry as a whole and we must continue to work together to ensure that when developments like Culzean –  or other projects such as BP’s Quad 204 and Clair Ridge – come online they can be run as efficiently as possible.

“BP has been focusing and refreshing its North Sea portfolio by bringing new fields into production, redeveloping and renewing existing producing facilities and divesting some of its more mature or less strategic assets.

“Our deepening in Culzean further demonstrates our commitment to supporting the development of another UK field for the future.”

Later, crude oil prices crept up to nearly $50-barrel following a positive market analysts’ note issued in New York by US merchant bank Goldman Sachs, a traditional oil ‘bear’.

Brent crude futures settled up $1.14, or 2.4%, at $48.97 per barrel. It rallied to $49.47 earlier, its highest since early November 2015 in a test towards $50-barrel.

The Goldman note said: “The oil market has gone from nearing storage saturation to being in deficit much earlier than we expected,” which added that global oil supply’ likely’ shifted into a deficit this month

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