Premier Oil sells North Sea licences for $130m

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Premier Oil, operator of the massive Catcher field, today said it has sold its non-operated interests in the Rochelle, Scott and Telford fields for $130 million (£76.4m) in cash to Hungary’s MOL Group.

In the year to date, production from the three fields has averaged about 3,700 net barrels a day for Premier, which owns 15 per cent of Rochelle, 21.8 per cent of Scott and 1.6 per cent of Telford.

Chief executive Tony Durrant said: “Our ownership of this package of non-operated assets in the Scott area has generated significant cash flow for the group since acquisition.

“However, this sale will allow our team in the UK North Sea to focus principally on our operated Solan and Catcher developments, and is a further step towards achieving our targeted disposals for the year.”

Catcher, located about 124 miles east of Aberdeen, is expected to produce 96 million barrels of oil, with a peak production rate of some 50,000 barrels a day. First oil from the £1.5 billion scheme is targeted for the middle of 2017.