Norway's PGS sees high summer N.Atlantic oil exploration interest

OSLO, April 10 Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:41am EDT

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OSLO, April 10 (Reuters) - Norwegian seismic surveyor Petroleum Geo-Services expects a busy summer season in the North Atlantic region driven by high exploration and production interest among oil companies, it said in its annual report on Thursday.

Seismic surveyors, which seek oil and gas deposits under the sea floor, have been hit hard as oil companies have reduced spending to focus on costs and improve cash flow.

Recent market updates from competitors Dolphin Group however, suggest activity is picking up again from low levels in the fourth quarter.

"The North Atlantic region will once again be busy, driven by high exploration and production interest. We expect very healthy market conditions for the upcoming summer season," Chief Executive Jon Erik Reinhardsen said in a letter to shareholders.

The firm also said basins offshore Brazil would be important drivers for the seismic market this year, in addition to further exploration activity in Central America and Gulf of Mexico.

"That said, activity levels in Nigeria, Asia Pacific, and offshore Libya and Egypt remain relatively low, although these regions offer good future growth potential."

PGS said earlier this year it expected a weak first quarter due to challenging market conditions, while French competitor CGG said it would cut its seismic fleet due to a drop in exploration spending by oil industry customers. [ID: nL6N0LW0MX] (Reporting by Henrik Stolen, editing by David Evans)

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