Oonagh Werngren, Operations Director, Oil & Gas UK, has welcomed a rise in the proportion of North Sea oil exploration licences awarded to independent operators in the latest round of UK Government licences (See Scottish Energy News, 2 December 2013)
She said: “We welcome the Energy Minister’s announcement of a further 52 production licences awarded as part of the 27th offshore oil and gas licensing round. This award demonstrates the strength of interest in the exploration and production of natural resources off the coast of the UK.
“We are particularly encouraged by the fact that 21 of these licences have been awarded to small independents who are new entrants to the market. This is three times the number of licences granted to independents last year, and highlights the strategic importance of achieving a balance between established operators and newcomers.
“Improving both the number of wells drilled in the UKCS (UK continental shelf/ North Sea) and improving exploration success rates are key issues for both the industry and government. Successful exploration and production not only helps to promote security of energy supply but also strengthens the UK’s economy and ever-growing supply chain and the hundreds of thousands jobs it supports.”