Multinational oil and gas majors Statoil and ExxonMobil have decided to approve the development of the Julia field in the Gulf of Mexico.
Discovered in 2007, the field is located about 200 miles south of New Orleans, Louisiana, and is expected to contain around six billion barrels of resource in place.
Julia field will form a subsea tieback to the Chevron operated Jack and St. Malo floating production platform, situated about 15 miles away.
Sanctioned in 2010, Statoil is a co-owner of the Jack and St. Malo developments, two separate fields located 40km away from each other.
The Jack field lies in Walker Ridge blocks 758 and 759 at a water depth of 7,000ft, while the St Malo field lies in Walker Ridge Block 678 at a water depth of 2,100ft.
Statoil said it will start drilling operations at the Julia field in 2014, while production start-up has been planned for 2016.
The field is expected to produce initially at a rate of up to 34,000 barrels of oil per day, while its lifetime is estimated to be up to 40 years.
Statoil US Offshore senior vice president, Jason Nye, said the Julia field is a strong addition to the company’s growing portfolio in the Gulf of Mexico.
"Julia has a substantial long-term production potential which is expected to be fully realised through the application of technology to unlock its full potential," Nye added.
Image: Oil reserves in the Jack / St Malo fields are found in a geological formation known as the Lower Tertiary trend.