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The following article appeared in the December 1997 issue of Offshore magazine

Four regions remain activity leaders through 2005 1997 not such a boom year, considering what the future holds

Marshall DeLuca, Business Editor

Leonard Le Blanc, Editor

The four most active offshore oil and gas development regions in the world - Northwest Europe, West Africa, Southeast Asia, and North America - will probably remain that way through the year 2005. According to statistical data generated by Infield Systems in London, the four regions show a relatively large number of planned oil and gas development projects will very little decrease over the coming years.

Infield has generated data on current, planned, and considered field developments, platforms, subsea wells, and pipelines around the globe from 1997 through 2005. The data gatherer considers this a "snapshot" of the industry rather than a forecast.

Economic fundamentals (prices, supply), the political climate (events, regulations, and environmental) and events within the industry (discoveries, technological advances) can alter development planning, but the projections are likely to hold if the drivers do not change significantly.

1997 not so hot

Contrary to the alleged industry "boom" currently underway, 1997 will be remarkable in that the fewer field developments will come onstream this year than in any of the next six years following, according to Infield Systems data. This suggests that industry equipment demand will definitely increase without letup for most of the next decade.

Producing companies in most geographic regions plan to place the largest number of oil and gas developments onstream between the years 2000 and 2001. North America is the only geographic region with a peak onstream rate in 1997.

Northwest Europe plans the region's most fields to be developed in 1998 with 75. Only 38 fields are expected to be onstream in 1997, a number that the region does not plan to drop below until 2004.

Numbers of Subsea Completed Wells Currently Operational, Under Development or Being Planned & Considered for Start-up

Pipeline plans

If all plans are met to fruition, by the year 2005 a total of 168,568,107 meters of trunk and field pipelines will have been installed. A total of 73,500,535 meters are planned for 1997 through the year 2005, an average of 8,166,726 meters per year worldwide.

Northwest Europe is planning the longest collective distance of pipeline length to be laid followed by North America. Each plan over 2,300,000 meters for 1997. Europe plans to lay the most pipeline in 1998, with 4,337,010 meters, almost 2,000,000 more meters than any other region in a given year.

North America currently has laid the most pipeline, with more than 31,000,000 meters, followed by Northwest Europe, with 21,693,447, Southeast Asia with 10,285,144 meters, followed by Latin America.

The numbers reflect that these regions also plan to lay the most pipeline in the coming years with respect to the rest of the world.

That Northwest Europe, Southeast Asia, West Africa, and North America lead almost each one of these charts is no surprise, but it is reassuring to see that the numbers will continue to hold strong for regions that are maturing or mature.

For more information please contact Infield

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