PRESS RELEASE 1Q 2012 RESULTS FOR THE SDFI

Petoro's best ever quarter – net cash flow up 25 per cent

Strong growth in the volume of gas sales and higher oil and gas prices combined to boost cash flow from the State’s Direct Financial Interest (SDFI) on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS) by no less than 25 per cent in the first quarter of 2012, compared with the same period of last year. NOK 42.9 billion was transferred to the government in the first three months of 2012.
"It’s very positive to be able to present a report for the first quarter with an overall production increase and a levelling off for oil output compared to previous years. The production development and relatively stable prices through this period have enabled us to transfer the highest net cash flow to the government, in the history of Petoro", said president and CEO, Kjell Pedersen.

Oil and gas production in the first quarter came to 1 319 000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d), compared with 1.228 million boe/d in the same period of last year. That represents an increase of seven per cent.

Gas output was up by 14 per cent compared with the first quarter of 2011, largely because of higher gas sales from the Oseberg and Troll fields. Output of oil and natural gas liquids (NGL) fell by three per cent, mainly as a result of reductions from mature fields and riser problems on Snorre B. However, oil production fell significantly less than in previous quarters since output peaked in 2001.

Income after financial items for the SDFI in the first quarter was NOK 43 billion, while operating income came to NOK 44.1 billion compared with NOK 35.2 billion for the same period of 2011.

Income from oil sales was 18 per cent up from the first quarter of last year, primarily because of a 15 per cent rise in prices. The increase for gas sales was 23 per cent, primarily because of increased volumes from Troll. Higher prices for oil and reduced import of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe, helped to strengthen gas prices by 13 per cent from the first quarter of 2011.

A cooperation agreement has been reached by the two licences which embrace the Johan Sverdrup field in the North Sea. "This collaboration lays the basis for efficient coordination of continued work on delineating the discovery and on planning its development", said Pedersen. He adds that Petoro is now involved in a great many highly interesting projects on mature fields, on earlier discoveries now under development, and on new finds such as Johan Sverdrup and Skrugard.

“These projects are of various types and levels of maturity. They offer us good opportunities for value creation and interesting assignments for our staff. Petoro is concerned both to safeguard assets in time-critical mature fields and to handle the development of new discoveries”, said Pedersen.


Contact:
Sveinung Sletten, head of communications, Petoro AS
Office: +47 51 50 20 24, mobile: +47 95 07 55 54
E-mail: sveinung.sletten@petoro.no
Publishing date: 09-05-2012