Statoil to resume UK North Sea Oil projects

LONDON, July 5 Tue Jul 5, 2011 5:50am EDT

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LONDON, July 5 (Reuters) - Norwegian oil and gas producer Statoil said on Tuesday it would resume preparatory work on North Sea Oil fields after Britain announced additional support measures for firms that operate in small oil fields.

Statoil had suspended $10 billion worth of projects off Britain after UK finance minister George Osborne announced a surprise increase in tax on North Sea oil producers earlier this year.

But the company said it would now resume preparatory work on the projects before making final investment decision at the end of next year after the government announced it was raising a tax support threshold for oil companies.

"With this announcement today, the negative tax impact has been neutralised," a Statoil spokesman told Reuters.

"We're now able to move forward at full speed with the technical and commercial work we need to do before a final announcement is made," he added.

(Reporting by Fiona Shaikh)

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