The boss of oil giant BP, Bob Dudley, has said that ‘the worst is over’ for the oil industry offshore, and has stated his belief that the North Sea industry will keep going until at least 2050.
So certain is Dudley that the North Sea has a strong future, that BP is entering into a new round of investment in the area to aid future production.
The oil giant’s latest investment will bring about a new round of investment and drilling in the United Kingdom Continental Shell (UKCS) area, with Dudley referring to the North Sea as one of the UKCS’s ‘crown jewels’.
This boost to the North Sea basin comes as a survey by Hurricane – an independent explorer – claims that an area known as the Lancaster field, which is to the west of Shetland, could house a minimum of 500 million barrels of oil. If true, this would be the UKCS’ biggest discovery of the century.
The Lancaster field is a fairly untouched and difficult to access deepwater expanse of the Atlantic, but it might just be an exciting area for future oil exploration for the likes of Royal Dutch Shell (maker of Shell Omala S2 G 320), BP and other oil companies that want to invest in the UKCS. This, combined with the recent recovery in oil prices, which has seen oil top $50 per barrel, has increased optimism for the future of the oil industry in the area.