October 21, 2019 / 12:22 PM / 21 days ago

Equinor to ship first Sverdrup oil cargo to China

OSLO (Reuters) - The first cargo of crude produced at Norway’s giant Johan Sverdrup oilfield will be shipped to China later this week via the Suez Canal, field operator Equinor said on Monday.

The buyer is China International United Petroleum & Chemicals Co., Ltd. (UNIPEC), a part of the SINOPEC Group.

The first cargo will hold one million barrels of oil with a market value of around $60 million, while future cargoes are expected to contain between 600,000 and 2 million barrels, the company added.

Output from Sverdrup started on Oct. 5, a month ahead of Equinor’s original schedule.

Oil is exported from the 2.7-billion-barrel field to the onshore Mongstad terminal via a 283-kilometre-long pipeline, with output seen rising to 440,000 barrels per day by summer 2020.

The field also produces associated natural gas, which is exported via a separate pipeline to the Kaarstoe gas processing plant.

Equinor said it expected Sverdrup’s annual gas production to total 1 billion cubic metres before its second development phase comes on stream in 2022.

Equinor holds a 42.6% percent stake in the field, while Sweden’s Lundin Petroleum has 20%, Norway’s state-owned Petoro 17.36%, independent oil firm Aker BP 11.57% and France’s Total 8.4%.

Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis, editing by Terje Solsvik, Kirsten Donovan

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