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Arctic oil rush abates in Norway after exploration letdown

Most of Norway's undiscovered oil and gas is believed to be in the Barents Sea, but poor results this year have resulted in only 11 companies applying for exploration licenses in the latest round.

Photo: ritzau/Vahid Salemi/AP

Oil exploration in Norway's Arctic seems to have lost some of its appeal after a disappointing drilling campaign.

Only 11 companies applied for exploration licenses in the latest round -- the nation's 24th -- which focused heavily on the Barents Sea, the Petroleum and Energy Ministry said in a statement on its website on Tuesday. That's down from 26 in the previous offering and the lowest level since at least 2002, according to records available on the government's website.

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