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4-Traders Homepage  >  Equities  >  Oslo Bors  >  Aker ASA    AKER   NO0010234552

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Aker BP plans to drill 6-8 exploration wells in 2018

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09/13/2017 | 08:57am CEST

OSLO (Reuters) - Aker BP plans to drill between six and eight exploration wells off Norway next year, including four in the Barents Sea, the Norwegian oil firm's chief executive told Reuters.

One of these will target a prospect in the southeast Barents on the maritime border with Russia and could contain significant new resources.

"Yes, it can, but it also (has) quite a bit of risk," Chief Executive Karl Johnny Hersvik said in an interview at Aker BP's office near Oslo. "It's an interesting prospect."

Aker BP, which is 40 percent owned by Aker Capital (>> Aker ASA) and 30 percent by BP (>> BP), operates the licence with partners including Russia's Lukoil (>> NK Lukoil PAO) and Norway's Statoil (>> Statoil).

Statoil recently completed the highly anticipated Korpfjell well some 100 km further north, but found only a small, non-commercial quantity of gas, contrary to expectations of a multi-million or even a billion-barrels discovery.

"The hype of the Barents Sea was too high... It's not game over, but it's worthwhile to cool it a bit," Hersvik said.

In 2017, Aker BP plans to drill eight exploration wells in Norway, including five partner-operated wells.

Aker's production outlook for 2017 is 135,000-140,000 barrels of oil equivalents per day, Hersvik said, but said this could be revised depending on a capacity increase at Lundin's Edvard Grieg field.

Aker BP's Ivar Aasen field sends oil and gas to the Edvard Grieg platform for further processing and export, and is thus dependent on it capacity.

Hersvik said he expected a "slight decline" in production in 2018 and 2019 compared with 2017, before the start-up of Statoil's Johan Sverdrup field in late 2019, where Aker BP holds an 11.57 percent stake.

Oil companies have sharply reduced their costs in recent years to compensate for a fall in crude prices but there is still room for cuts, including some at Sverdrup, Hersvik said.

Due to start production in late 2019, the Sverdrup field holds an estimated 2-3 billion barrels of oil equivalents, the largest found off Norway in decades.

(Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis; editing by Terje Solsvik and Jason Neely)

Stocks treated in this article : Aker ASA, Aker BP, Statoil, NK Lukoil PAO, Lundin Petroleum, BP
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AKER BP -2.95% 295.6 Delayed Quote.46.41%
BP -3.50% 565 Delayed Quote.8.09%
EQUINOR -1.19% 216.2 Delayed Quote.23.40%
LUNDIN PETROLEUM -3.77% 273.1 Delayed Quote.45.42%
NK LUKOIL PAO --End-of-day quote.
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Sales 2018 38 406 M
EBIT 2018 -213 M
Net income 2018 1 875 M
Debt 2018 6 583 M
Yield 2018 3,55%
P/E ratio 2018 24,04
P/E ratio 2019 19,97
EV / Sales 2018 1,30x
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 10
Average target price 644  NOK
Spread / Average Target 10%
EPS Revisions
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