The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has published the ‘2018 Resource Report for Exploration’, which states that new larger discoveries have to be made to maintain the same level of oil and gas production from the Norwegian shelf after the mid-2020s.

According to the report, the Norwegian shelf still offers significant opportunities across mature and less-explored areas to enable operating companies to increase their production levels.

Deployment of new technologies and work methods can help to identify profitable discoveries in the region, the report stated.

NPD exploration director Torgeir Stordal said: “This report includes an updated overview of undiscovered petroleum resources on the shelf.

“The combination of better geotechnical expertise and digital technology will probably become the key to identifying new resources in the years to come.”

“It shows that after more than 50 years of activity, about 55% of anticipated oil and gas resources have yet to be produced. Of these, just under half have not even been discovered.”

It is estimated that undiscovered resources in the region host around 4,000 million standard cubic metres of oil equivalents.

According to the agency, most of the undiscovered resources are situated in the Barents Sea while some others are in the North and Norwegian Seas.

It emphasises on further exploration in sea areas on the Norwegian shelf, as the operators are required to explore more frontier areas along with the matured and familiar regions.

In the recent years, most of the discoveries in the Norwegian shelf were smaller than the older resources and the discovery of commercial deposits became relatively difficult.

Accordingly, NPD stated that it is imperative to utilise new technology which helped in procuring deeper insight of the resources and deploy new exploration concepts.

Stordal added: “This development will continue. The combination of better geotechnical expertise and digital technology will probably become the key to identifying new resources in the years to come.”