Executive Council
Natural Resources
July 26, 2018

Premier Ball Marks First Step into New Frontier for Oil and Gas Industry

The Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, today announced the first step into a new frontier for the province’s oil and gas industry – deepwater production.

Premier Ball was joined at the announcement by the Honourable Siobhan Coady, Minister of Natural Resources, Unni Fjaer, Vice President, Offshore Newfoundland, Equinor Canada, and Trevor Pritchard, Senior Vice President, Atlantic Region, Husky Energy, to finalize a framework agreement for the development of the Bay du Nord Project.

Discovered in 2013, the Bay du Nord Project is expected to be sanctioned in 2020, with first oil expected in 2025. With reserves of nearly 300 million barrels of oil, Bay du Nord is the first remote, deepwater project in the province’s offshore (500 kilometres from shore and approximately 1,200 metres deep). It opens a new basin – the Flemish Pass and is the first project to be negotiated under Newfoundland and Labrador’s generic oil royalty regulations.

The project has many benefits for the people of Newfoundland and Labrador, including:

  • More than $14 billion in economic activity (in 2017 dollars);
  • In-province employment of 22.3 million person hours over the life of the project (approximately 11,000 person years);
  • Estimated $3.5 billion in government revenues;
  • Expected in-province fabrication of 5,000 metric tonnes;
  • Focus on subsea engineering and new fabrication capabilities;
  • A minimum $75 million in research and development, and education and training expenditures over 10 years to position Newfoundland and Labrador as a deepwater centre of excellence; and
  • Equity stake of 10 per cent.

Further project benefits are included in the backgrounder below.

The Bay du Nord Project aligns with Advance 2030 – The Way Forward on Oil and Gas, which was developed to position Newfoundland and Labrador as a globally preferred location for oil and gas development. The Way Forward outlines all actions the Provincial Government is taking to achieve a strong, diversified province with a high standard of living, and can be viewed at thewayforward.gov.nl.ca.

“Today marks the global recognition of Newfoundland and Labrador as a preferred location for deepwater production. Equinor and Husky’s commitment and investment in this project highlights the attractiveness of our industry and the potential that exists within this province in our offshore. This government is dedicated to bringing economic activity to our doorstep and the Bay du Nord Project will provide significant benefits including new employment opportunities over the life of the project. With today’s announcement, we take our first step into the new frontier, we mark a new era of deep-water exploration as well as the opening of a new basin – the Flemish Pass. The future of our offshore begins today.”
Honourable Dwight Ball
Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

“The announcement of a framework agreement for the development of the Bay du Nord Project opens the next basin, establishes a deepwater field and will drive subsea development. It is an important step in achieving Advance 2030 - The Way Forward in Oil and Gas which is driven by an innovative, sustainable, local industry that is globally competitive, environmentally responsible, and maximizes benefits to the people of the province.”
Honourable Siobhan Coady
Minister of Natural Resources

“This marks an important milestone to progress a successful development at the Bay du Nord discovery. This framework agreement provides important clarity and stability as Equinor and our partner Husky Energy work to move this project toward a sanction decision in the coming years. We also welcome our new equity partner, the province’s energy company, to the project. Equinor’s purpose – to turn natural resources into energy for people and progress for society – means we use our competence and technology to provide energy to a growing population in a safe and responsible way, and the Bay du Nord project presents an opportunity to achieve this offshore Newfoundland and Labrador.”
Unni Fjaer
Vice President, Offshore Newfoundland, Equinor Canada

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Learn More

Advance 2030 PDF Icon

The Way Forward

Bay du Nord Project

Deepwater Production: Bay du Nord Project external link icon - Video

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Media contacts
Michelle Cannizzaro
Office of the Premier

Nancy Hollett
Natural Resources

Alex Collins
Equinor Canada Ltd.

Bay du Nord Project Benefits


  • Benefits agreement will apply to all phases of the project including operations.

Estimated in-province employment of 22.3 million person hours, approximately 11,000 person years, life-of-field (84 per cent of total project employment):

  • 4 million person hours in pre-development and development phases, including 1.7 million person hours of engineering, project management and procurement work:
    • At least 90 per cent of project management in-province, not less than 320,000 person hours;
    • At least 90 per cent of procurement management in-province, not less than 280,000 person hours;
    • At least 51 per cent of pre-development and development engineering in-province, not less than 1.1 million person hours, with a focus on subsea engineering;
  • 5.2 million person hours for drilling and completions:
    • At least 90 per cent of engineering and execution of drilling and completions in-province;
  • 1.1 million person hours for Baccalieu subsea tieback;
  • 12 million person hours for operations (substantially all onshore and offshore operations phase employment), including engineering, maintenance, logistics, research and development and support functions.

Significant Financial Benefits

  • An estimated $3.5 billion in provincial revenues from royalties, taxes, and equity.

Strengthening Newfoundland and Labrador Capabilities and Competitiveness

  • Expected in-province fabrication of 5,000 metric tonnes including subsea, topsides and suction anchors for moorings:
    • 4,600 metric tonnes is related to Bay du Nord;
    • 400 metric tonnes is conditional on Baccalieu subsea tieback;
  • Multi-million dollar investment in a large scale steel roller to build local fabrication capability;
  • A focus on subsea engineering in the province;
  • Additional engineering and fabrication opportunities will be available for competitive bid;
  • A minimum $75 million in research and development and education and training expenditures to position Newfoundland and Labrador as a deepwater centre of excellence in subsea technology, digitalization, renewable energy solutions and ocean innovation;
  • Establishment of an integrated operations centre in Newfoundland and Labrador with up to 50 people in support of operations, engineering, maintenance, logistics, health, safety and environment, information technology and other support personnel;
  • A supply and service opportunities forum with dedicated resources and an annual work plan of activities that supports the identification of business opportunities, fosters operator-supplier collaboration, and focuses on global competitiveness;
  • A gender equity and diversity program designed to address employment equity, implement proactive programs and practices, and promote accountability and responsibility for gender equity and diversity for all phases of the project.

2018 07 26                              9:50 a.m.