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Norway Oseberg oil shutdown extended, Statfjord still shut in

London — Norway's Equinor has extended a week-long shutdown of the Oseberg oil field until Saturday, and is also investigating an oil leak that has halted loadings at the Statfjord facility.

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The unplanned shutdown at Oseberg for 'corrective maintenance' began on May 8 and was meant to last eight days but will now last 10 days, implying a resumption on Saturday, according to state pipeline operator Gassco. Equinor declined to provide additional comment.

Regarding Wednesday's incident at Statfjord, Equinor said it was investigating, and loadings remain suspended. "With regards to the observed oil near loading operations...yesterday, no observation of oil has been made since yesterday and the search for a potential leakage point continues on the loading systems," Equinor told S&P Global Platts.

Oseberg crude, derived from the Oseberg, Brage and Veslefrikk fields, is a contributor to the Platts Dated Brent price assessment process. The Oseberg complex produced nearly 110,000 b/d of oil last year, as well as around 9 million cu m/d of gas.

Statfjord is the loading point for the Statfjord field, but also larger volumes from the nearby Snorre field. The overall flow of oil from Snorre amounted to around 120,000 b/d last year.

The North Sea crude market is exceptionally tight due to disruptions and maintenance in the region, as well as knock-on effects from a contamination issue that has disrupted supplies of Russian crude to Europe. Also, European imports of light sweet crude from the US have ebbed, according to traders.

Norway's oil production has been on a downward trend for about 18 months due to steep natural decline and technical issues, with a boost exported next year from the start of production at the giant Johan Sverdrup field.

-- Nick Coleman, nick.coleman@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Dan Lalor, daniel.lalor@spglobal.com