STAVANGER, Norway, Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Norwegian energy company Statoil said Monday it believes its latest discovery in the Barents Sea contains more than 20 million barrels of oil.
Statoil said it made an oil discovery in the Skavl prospect of the Barents Sea. The company encountered a small amount of natural gas and estimated the prospect, in the Johan Castberg field, contains 20 million to 50 million barrels of recoverable oil.
"Statoil puts a lot of effort into proving additional oil resources in the Johan Castberg area in order to make the field development project more robust," Gro Haatvedt, Statoil's vice president in charge of offshore exploration in Norway, said in a statement. "We are pleased to see that our efforts now pay off."
The Norwegian energy company said Skavl was the third of four wells planned in the Johan Castberg area in the Barents Sea this year. The first two wells gave up only natural gas. One more well in the region is planned this year and the company said it will continue its exploration effort into 2014.
Statoil is the majority stakeholder and operator of the field alongside Norwegian counterpart Petoro and a subsidiary of Italian energy company Eni.