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    North Sea giant "to divide and conquer"

    News // June 15, 2001
    The Scotsman newspaper in the UK says Norway's oil and gas sector is undergoing a structural shake-up so massive that it will be felt throughout the North Sea offshore industry and gas supplies market in Europe.

    The core of the revolution is the partial privatisation of state-owned energy company Statoil and disposal of a big slice of the government's direct stake in reserves on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS).

    In addition, the current way in which gas is sold to EU countries is being scrapped and replaced with a system acceptable to the bureaucrats in Brussels, given Norway's preferred status EU links.

    The primary objective of the shake-up is to sharpen the competitiveness of the Norwegian offshore industry in the face of fierce international competition for investment.

    While classed as mature, the NCS still has very large reserves, reinforced by the fact that big discoveries are still possible.

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