April 28, 2020 / 11:44 AM / 3 months ago

Neptune Energy sees delay to start-up of Fenja oilfield

OSLO, April 28 (Reuters) - Production at the Fenja oil and gas field off Norway will be delayed due to the restrictions imposed as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, operator Neptune Energy said on Tuesday.

Fenja is the first project Neptune Energy is due to operate in Norway, rather than only be a partner in, with some 97 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe) in recoverable resources and an expected plateau production of 40,000 boe per day.

“The Fenja drilling campaign has been modified to address delays resulting from the impact of COVID-19 with the licence partners opting to carry out drilling in three phases over the next two years,” the company said in a statement.

As a result, the startup of production is now expected in the fourth quarter of 2021 instead of the first quarter the same year previously, a spokeswoman told Reuters.

The UK-based, private equity-backed company led by former Centrica’s boss Sam Laidlaw has a 30% stake in Fenja, while its partners, Eni’s subsidiary Vaar Energi has 45%, Suncor 17.5% and DNO 7.5%.

The company is also considering delaying some exploration drilling, but has not made any decisions yet, the spokeswoman added.

Neptune Energy planned to drill a total of five exploration wells, including three wells it would operate itself, off Norway in 2020.

Neptune Energy announced in March it planned to cut spending for development projects by some $300 million and that it would not pay a cash dividend to its owners Carlyle and CVC Capital Partners. (Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis, editing by Gwladys Fouche)

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