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Centrica goes ahead with $630 mln oilfield off Norway

OSLO Nov 30 Centrica and partners will invest 5.4 billion Norwegian crowns ($629.65 million) in the development of the Oda oilfield off Norway after cutting costs by around 45 percent compared to initial estimates, the British utility said on Tuesday.

The North Sea field, formerly known as Butch, will be developed as a subsea tie-back to the Ula platform and production startup is expected by 2019.

Including Oda, five development plans have been submitted to Norwegian authorities in 2016, all as tiebacks to existing fields.

"Such developments provide gains in several ways by creating value from the discovery, from the field it is being tied back to and by sustaining infrastructure which provides for even more satellite developments in the future," Norway's Oil Minister Tord Lien said in a separate statement.

Oil firms have embarked on massive cost cuts in recent years to make field developments viable even after a crash in crude prices.

Partners in the licence are Suncor Energy, Faroe Petroleum and Tullow Oil Norway. ($1 = 8.5762 Norwegian crowns) (Reporting by Stine Jacobsen, editing by Terje Solsvik)

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