Equinor cuts jobs in North America and UK
Equinor is not open to selling any of its assets to offset the effects of lower oil prices. However, some of the upcoming staff cuts are the result of the company’s sale last year of its Eagle Ford assets.
In a statement on Wednesday, Equinor also announced that it would be cutting contractor numbers by around half. It was not announced exactly how many of its approximately 21,000 staff will be affected.
A spokesman told Reuters that the move has been taken to ensure that the company remains profitable at lower oil prices: "There is no change in our acreage portfolio. The action that we are taking now is to ensure that our business is profitable in a lower price scenario”.
In a further move to control its expenditure, Equinor has also announced that it will not drill any new unconventional wells in the United States this year. This means that its acreage in the Bakken and Marcellus formations will not be developed.
Equinor is majority-owned by the Norwegian government, and has been heavily criticised this year for making significant losses in the United States, its second-largest business after Norway. Since then, Brent crude oil has fallen to its lowest level in two decades, due to a severe decrease in demand during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ineos Energy sells Norwegian business to PGNiG for $615m
Ineos Energy is selling its oil and gas business in Norway to PGNiG Upstream Norway for $615 million with the deal covering production, licenses, fields, facilities and pipelines on the Norwegian continental shelf.
Ineos E&P Norge produces around 33,000 BOE per day from the Norwegian Sea with a 93% gas ratio, from 3 non-operated fields, Ormen Lange (14%), Alve (15%) and Marulk (30%). The business also holds 22 offshore licenses, of which 6 are operated, and has equity in the Nyhamna Terminal (8%).
The deal rebalances its portfolio in terms of oil and gas and moves Ineos Energy towards a more operated position.
The sale, subject to approval by the Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and the Norwegian Ministry of Finance, is expected to complete later this year. All 52 employees of INEOS E&P Norge AS will transfer to PGNiG Upstream Norway AS following completion of the deal.
The PGNiG Group is the largest Polish oil and gas company employing 25,000 people worldwide. PGNiG Upstream Norway AS is an integrated exploration and production company established in Norway in 2007 and plays an important role in the supply of gas to Poland.
Brian Gilvary, Executive Chairman of INEOS Energy said: "The deal allows us to monetise a non-operated, predominantly gas portfolio at an attractive price compared to our hold value. This will further balance our portfolio of oil and gas and open up new opportunities to reinvest further into the energy transition. These assets are a very strong strategic fit for PGNiG and significantly extends their position in Norway."
It follows the announcement of the acquisition of the HESS business in Denmark, which consists of operated assets.
PGNiG Upstream Norway and its licence partners brought on stream another three wells in the Ærfugl field last November. This will enable the company to increase its total output of natural gas on the Norwegian Continental Shelf to almost 1 bcm in 2021.