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Consent to conduct exploration drilling with Polar Pioneer – block 7223/5

Consent: StatoilHydro has received consent to conduct exploration drilling of wells 7223/5-1 S and 7223/5-1 A in the Barents Sea.

 Location of the well

Location map

The wells are part of production licence 228 and have the following geographical coordinates:

N 72° 32' 06.07",  E 23° 20' 07.08".  Water depth at the site is 340 metres.

The consent has been granted in part on the basis of documentation submitted in connection with the application for consent, as well as the documentation associated with the Acknowledgement of Compliance (AoC) for the Polar Pioneer, issued 6 April 2004, with the preconditions and obligations the AoC represents for the owner and operator.

The Polar Pioneer is a semi-submersible drilling facility built in 1985, designed by Sonat/Hitachi. The facility has previously drilled production wells for Snøhvit and several exploration wells for Statoil, Hydro and Eni in the Barents Sea.

The drilling activity on block 7223/5 is expected to last 55 days, with start-up in November 2008.