(Reuters) – Oil and gas firm Aker BP will accelerate the startup of production from Norway’s Aerfugl natural gas field, the company said on Monday.
In a surprise move, the company now plans to start Aerfugl production in the first half of 2020, three years ahead of what had originally been billed as the field’s second phase.
Partners in the 8 billion Norwegian crown ($875 million) project are Aker BP, Equinor, Wintershall DEA and PGNiG.
The original first phase of development, which now comes second, is meanwhile on track to start production in the fourth quarter of 2020, Aker BP said in a statement.
The Aerfugl field is among the most profitable development projects off the coast of Norway, with a break-even price of around $15 per barrel of oil equivalent, it added.
The Norwegian Sea reservoir, containing some 300 million barrels of oil equivalent, will be processed via a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel that is already in place at the nearby Skarv field.
The early startup was made possible by modifying the FPSO to boost its gas processing capacity, Aker BP said.