NCS: Slowdown in drilling activity

The low oil price has a negative input on wildcats to be spudded this year.

«The number of explortion and appraisal [E&A] wells will most likely drop below 30 this year, and the low oil price is of course the reason,» says Anders Wittemann with Wittemann E&P Consulting.

This compares with last month’s forecast of more than 50 wells, and last year’s actual of 48 E&A wells spudded, of which 6 wells with appraisal as main purpose.

Drilling activity to date is already slow with only 5 wells spudded so far in 2020, while only 2 are currently drilling, 6406/3-10 (Nidhogg) (expronews: «Aker BP’s exploration plans for 2020») and 65078/10 S (Grind) (expronews: «Bold test on a shady prospect»).

In March, MOL released news about finding multiple pays in their Evra/Iving well (expronews: «A closer look at MOL’s multi-lvel discovery»).

«However, our inventory of wells ready to drill is with 77 still at a high level, but subject to review. This number includes wells in progress,» Wittemann says.

«More is likely to come, as 160 licences have drill or drop decisions yet to be made, while we also have to keep in mind that delayed deadlines are likely to be applied for,» Anders Wittemann says.

More information is to be found in the «Norway E&P Development Book March 2020 (April 2 Update)»,