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Total ramps up gas work in North Sea

Oct. 8, 2012 at 7:31 AM

PARIS, Oct. 8 (UPI) -- French energy company Total announced Monday start-up at the Atlas natural gas condensate field in the Norwegian waters of the North Sea.

Exploratory drilling in the field was completed in 2010. The French energy company said it expected to produce, on average, 14,000 barrels of oil equivalent and 2,500 barrels of condensates per day starting next year.

"The fast track development was completed within budget and schedule and will have a very quick return," Patrice de Vivies, senior vice president for exploration and development, said in a statement. "It is a good example of Total's expertise in maximizing value of mature assets by combining exploration and development forces."

Norway in September said it received applications from 47 companies for a bidding round for reserves on its continental shelf. That followed July labor strikes that cut into the production potential in the country. The International Energy Agency said July oil production from Norway was as its lowest level since 1991 because of strikes.

Norway is the largest oil producer in Europe and the second-largest exporter of natural gas after Russia. Total said Norway was the largest contributor to its equity production last year with 287,000 boe per day.

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