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North Sea Oil

Volume 13: debated on Thursday 19 November 1981

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asked the Secretary of State for Energy what percentage of the acreage covered by licences granted in each of the licensing rounds were granted to, and what percentages of current oil production is controlled by (a) each of the British oil majors, (b) American oil companies, (c) members of the British Independent Exploration Companies Association, (d) French and German oil companies and (e) others.

Information in the precise form requested is not readily available and the question could be answered fully only at disproportionate cost. The current approximate percentages of acreage held under seaward production licences are as follows:

per cent.
(1) British majors—BP7·5
Shell (40 per cent. UK share)3
(2) BNOC15
(3) BGC7·5
(4) Members of the British Independent Exploration Companies Association3
(5) Other UK companies8·5
(6) US oil companies40
(7) French and German oil companies5
(8) Others10·5
Some information on equity shares in producing fields is given in the report to Parliament by the Secretary of State—"Development of the Oil and Gas Reserves of the United Kingdom" 1981. The major part of production is subject to the Secretary of State's right to royalty and to BNOC's participation rights.