The aim of the APA scheme is to stimulate exploration activity in mature areas.
Sissel Eriksen, director of exploration at the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate, said: “This year there is especially great interest in available acreage in the northern part of the North Sea and the central part of the Norwegian Sea. We also notice an increased interest in the Barents Sea in relation to previous years.
“We see substantial competition for acreage that has been awarded several times before.”
Companies were offered acreage totaling 103,029 sq km (39,779 sq mi), comprising 377 blocks or part-blocks. The APA area in the Norwegian Sea was expanded by six blocks around theAasta Hansteen field, compared with APA 2012.
The following companies have applied for production licenses: A/S Norske Shell, Atlantic Petroleum Norge AS, Bayerngas Norge AS, Bridge Energy Norge AS, Capricorn Norge AS, Centrica Resources Norge AS, Chevron Norge AS, Concedo ASA, ConocoPhillips Scandinavia AS, Core Energy AS, Dana Petroleum Norway AS, Det norske oljeselskap ASA, Dong E&P Norge AS, E.ON Ruhrgas Norge AS, Edison International SpA, ENI Norge AS, EnQuest Norge AS, Explora Petroleum AS, ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Norway AS, Eykon Energy AS, Faroe Petroleum Norge AS, Fortis Petroleum Norway AS, GDF SUEZ E&P Norge AS, Idemitsu Petroleum Norge AS, Ithaca Petroleum Norge AS, Lime Petroleum Norway AS, LOTOS Exploration & Production Norge AS, Lundin Norway AS, Maersk Oil Norway AS, Marathon Oil Norge AS, Moeco Oil & Gas Norge AS, North Energy ASA, Noreco Norway AS, OMV Norge AS, Petrolia Norway AS, PGNiG Norway AS, Premier Oil Norge AS, Repsol Exploration Norge AS, Rocksource ASA, RWE-Dea Norge AS, Skagen44 AS, Spike Exploration Holding AS, Statoil Petroleum AS, Svenska Petroleum Exploration AS, Suncor Energy Norge AS, Talisman Energy Norge A/S, Total E&P Norge AS, Tullow Oil Norge AS, VNG Norge AS, and Wintershall Norge ASA.