Statoil Executive Director to hold talks in Baku

Helge Lund, CEO of STATOIL, arrived in Azerbaijan with a 2-day visit on 2 May this year. This is his first visit to Azerbaijan. During this stay Lund will be updated on companys activities in the country, and will meet with Government officials, and business partners, as well as visit one of the offshore platforms in the Caspian Sea, Statoil announced.

Azerbaijan is one of Statoils international core areas, which includes some 33 countries all over the world, Trend reports citing the announcement released by the Norwegian oil company.

Lund says: Our operations in Azerbaijan are high on our agenda and 2006 marks several key milestones both to us and the country. The commissioning of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline, and the start-up of Shah Deniz and the South Caucasus gas pipeline are all very important to Statoil. I look forward to getting on site updates about our projects and activities in Azerbaijan.

Lund will be accompanied by Executive Vice Presidents Rune Bjornson Natural Gas) and Reidar Gjarum (Communications).

Lund (born 16 October 1962) took up the post of chief executive on 15 August 2004.Before joining Statoil, he was chief executive of Aker Kværner ASA. Lund was a political adviser to the Conservative partys Storting (parliamentary) group and a consultant with McKinsey & Co before joining manufacturer Hafslund Nycomed in 1993. In 1997 and 1998 he served as deputy managing director for Nycomed Pharma AS. He joined Aker RGI Holding ASA in 1999 as deputy chief executive and chief operating officer, before becoming chief executive of Aker Kværner in 2002. Lund graduated as a business economist from the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration (NHH) in Bergen, and has an MBA from the Insead business school in France.

Statoil was among the first foreign companies to establish operations in Azerbaijan in 1992. Today, Azerbaijan is one of Statoil's international core areas, and Statoil is one of the biggest investors in Azerbaijan. Between 1992 and 1Q 2006, the company has spent close to 2.81 billion USD on its activities in the country.

The company's current upstream interests include Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (8.6 per cent), Shah Deniz (25.5 per cent), and Alov-Araz-Sharg (15.0 per cent).

Statoil is the Operator for the Azerbaijan Gas Supply Company, responsible for gas sales to Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. Statoil is also the Commercial Operator of the South Caucasus Pipeline Company where Statoil owns 25.5%. The company holds an 8.71% share in the BTC pipeline for export of Azerbaijani and Caspian oil from Azerbaijan, via Georgia to Turkey.

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