Oil major are faced with an expensive dilemma, as they spend more on high risk exploration to find increasingly smaller fields

Oil major are faced with an expensive dilemma, as they spend more on high risk exploration to find increasingly smaller fields. New conventional discoveries in recent years have disappointed in size and only a handful, such as Statoil's Johan Sverdrop oilfield in the North Sea, have emulated the mega fields discovered more than 50 years. Today we consume 33 billion barrels of oil per year and are discovering 10-20 billion barrels at most. It appears that the biggest single oil discovery in 2013 was less than 1 billion barrels in size, asset management firm Investec said in a report. Exploration and production spending has risen four-fold since 2000 to around $700 billion because of a rise in material and services prices. Oil discoveries peaked in the 1960s when around 400,000 billion barrels were discovered. (VIEW LINK)


Gavin Wendt
Founding Director
MineLife

Gavin has been a senior resources analyst following the mining and energy sectors for the past 25 years, working with Intersuisse and Fat Prophets. He is also the Executive Director, Mining & Metals with Independent Investment Research (IIR).

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