Denmark’s state-run Nordsøfonden will take a 20% interest in the Danish Underground Consortium (Duc), in line with a sole concession extension agreement signed in 2003.

Maersk Oil will continue as operator and hold a 31.2% stake in DUC, while Shell will own a 36.8% stake and Chevron will retain 12% interest, effective from 9 July.

"DUC is the operator of 16 fields with a daily production of about 180,000 barrels of oil and 14 million cubic metres of gas."

Jakob Thomasen, Maersk Oil CEO, said the company is looking forward to joining forces with Nordsøfonden for the next 30 years of the concession.

"DUC has challenging opportunities ahead as we continue seeking new ways of increasing oil and gas recovery from the Danish North Sea," said Thomasen.

"Nordsøfonden will be a true partner. It will contribute to and receive benefits from the DUC according to its 20% working interest. It is taking the role as an active company operating on a commercial basis and rationale."

Peter Helmer Steen, Nordsøfonden CEO, said the company’s role as a commercial partner in the DUC is to provide the state with the best possible economic returns.

"From a 30 year perspective, I see a huge potential for increased production from both existing fields and new fields, and the new DUC group has a wide range of challenging production enhancing projects ahead," said Steen.

DUC is the operator of 16 fields with a daily production of about 180,000 barrels of oil and 14 million cubic metres of gas.