Poor working conditions or striking to smoke?Statfjord A loading buoy towed out

Statfjord Transport established

person By Gunleiv Hadland, Norwegian Petroleum Museum
The Statfjord licensees entered collectively into a transport agreement with the same division of interests as the 12 partners had in the unitised field. A decision of 9 August 1978 created a limited partnership under the name K/S Statfjord Transport AS & Co to handle oil transport in chartered shuttle tankers.
— A tanker is loading oil from a loading buoy on the Statfjord field. Photo: Mobil Exploration Norway Inc./Norwegian Petroleum Museum
© Norsk Oljemuseum

Statoil became the operator for this joint venture, which would be led from Stavanger. Offshore loading was initially intended to be a temporary solution until a decision had been taken on whether the oil could be piped to land.

The associated gas was to be returned to the reservoir, since a transport solution for this part of the output was not yet in place.

Establishing the transport company provided the basis for the important role which Statoil was to acquire in offshore loading of oil. As the largest Statfjord licensee, the company had given weight to becoming operator for this function.

The plan for its activities in 1978 stated: “If offshore loading is chosen as the permanent transport solution, the company is organised in such a way that it can handle these assignments.”

Mobil had other plans, and proposed that the Statfjord licensees should establish a shipping company in Bermuda. This would then buy tankers from Mobil and charter them to Mobil Shipping and Transportation in New York.

Tanker transport from Statfjord would then be run in part by this company and in part by Mobil Marine in London – which was already responsible for oil shipments from Mobil’s Beryl field in the UK North Sea.

Statoil chief executive Arve Johnsen rejected these proposals, and noted that the licence terms for Statfjord did not specify rules for ship transport. His view prevailed, and Statoil thereby acquired its first operatorship.

Aftenposten, 9 August 1978. “Nytt transportselskap for Statfjord etablert”.
Johnsen, Arve. Norges evige rikdom. Oslo 2008, pp 180-188.
Lindøe, John Ove. From Sea to Shore. Stavanger 2009, pp 14-15 and 20.
Stafsnes, Tor. Ilandføring av petroleum fra Statfjord: analyse av en iverksettingsprosess. Bergen 1984, p 86.
Status, house journal for Statoil, no 14 1978, p 1. “STSP – Et pionerprosjekt i Statoil”.

Poor working conditions or striking to smoke?Statfjord A loading buoy towed out
Published November 26, 2019   •   Updated December 11, 2019
© Norsk Oljemuseum
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