USD 63.6336

-0.13

EUR 70.9196

-0.25

BRENT 59.24

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AI-92 42.28

0

AI-95 46.05

+0.01

AI-98 51.7

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Diesel 46.26

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20

Statoil's Profit Up on NOK 3bn

Statoil's net income in the second quarter of 2006 amounted to NOK 9.7 billion,

Norwegian oil and gas giant Statoil's net income in the second quarter of 2006 amounted to NOK 9.7 billion, compared to NOK 6.8 billion in the second quarter of 2005.

However, at the same time there was a drop in production for the quarter by 3 per cent.

In the first six months of 2006, net income was NOK 20.0 billion compared to NOK 13.5 billion in the first six months of 2005.

"The second quarter is characterised by continued high earnings mainly driven by strong oil markets. Industrially we have delivered important milestones in our international business, a high level of exploration activity and a strong downstream performance," says chief executive Helge Lund.

"I am pleased that we're continuing to report high earnings in a competitive market," says Mr Lund. "It's also encouraging to see that we're making progress towards our goal for health, safety and environmental indicators. The frequency of serious incidents has been halved since 2001."

The 44% increase in net income from the second quarter of 2005 to the second quarter of 2006 was mainly due to:

The increase in income was partly offset by a 3% decrease in oil and gas liftings, and Lund estimates a 1-2 per cent lower production for 2006 as a whole than earlier predicted.