OSLO, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Norway's Statoil aims to sign a power purchase agreement with a U.S. utility to develop an offshore wind power project off New York, a senior company official said on Tuesday.
Statoil won a lease sale of 79,350 acres offshore New York, which could be potentially used to develop up to a 1 gigawatt (GW) capacity wind power park, by bidding $42.5 million last December.
"Now we need to sign a power off-take agreement to develop the project. The counterpart would be one of New York's utilities," Stephen Bull, Statoil's senior vice president, told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference.
"We expect to sign the agreement towards the end-2018," he added.
Statoil, which also supplies New York with natural gas from the Northern Marcellus shale play, sees the United States as an important emerging market for offshore wind, both for bottom-fixed and floating turbines.
The company built the world's first floating wind power park off Scotland this year and is looking at more opportunities in Japan and the U.S. states of California and Hawaii.
"We hope to have a new (floating wind power) project within the next three years," Bull said.
Statoil plans to invest up to 100 billion Norwegian crowns ($12.22 billion) in the renewable energy and low carbon technologies from 2017 until 2030. ($1 = 8.1850 Norwegian crowns) (Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis Editing by Louise Heavens)