Algerian attack could lead to boosted Bakken oil output

Last week’s terrorist attack on an Algerian oil facility could divert Norwegian oil giant Statoil to increased oil production in safer regions, including North Dakota’s Bakken and Three Forks formations, where the two-thirds government owned Statoil already has made a heavy investment.

Five Statoil employees are among the missing after terrorists took hostages and Algerian forces stormed the facility. At least 23 hostages died.

Bloomberg News reported this week that security problems in Algeria and elsewhere in North Africa could prompt Statoil “to focus even more on shale oil and gas in the U.S. and deepwater fields off Brazil, where most of the company’s production growth is expected to occur in this decade.”

The news service quoted Trond Omdal, a securities analyst, as saying the Algeria attack will “reinforce a trend … away from high-risk areas.”

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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