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Norway Offers 36 Offshore Blocks, None in Barents Sea

March 30, 2020

Illustration; Offshore rigs in Norway - Image by mariusltu - AdobeStock

Norway is offering oil firms 36 offshore exploration blocks in this year's licensing round in mature areas and for the first time in a decade did not offer any blocks in the Barents Sea.

All the blocks are offered in the western part of the Norwegian Sea, with interested parties asked to send their comments by May 11, the oil and energy ministry said.

"In demanding times, it is important to plan for the future," Norway's Oil and Energy Minister Tina Bru said in a statement.

"Regular access to new exploration is crucial to further develop our largest industry and maintain activity on the Norwegian continental shelf."

Norway introduced annual rounds for mature areas in 2003 to expand areas that have been already explored or had an existing oil and gas infrastructure.

For the first time since 2010, Norway did not offer any exploration blocks in the Barents Sea in a mature licensing round.

The oil and energy ministry was not immediately available for further comment. 

(Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis, editing by Gwladys Fouche)

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