U.K. North Sea oil and gas production may fall as much as 22% this year and take longer to reach previous estimates of higher output, reports Bloomberg.
Industry trade body Oil and Gas UK lowered its forecast for daily production in 2013 from its estimate in March to 1.2 million to 1.4 million barrels of oil equivalent, compared with last year’s average of 1.54 million barrels. It also pared its earlier estimates for a recovery in production.
“Using the latest available data the indications are that it is toward the bottom of our predicted range,” the group said in its 2013 economic activity report. “Maintenance is concentrated in the summer months.” It previously forecast production this year of 1.45 million to 1.5 million barrels.
Production efficiency is expected to have fallen to about 60 percent in 2012, compared with 80 percent in 2004.
The industry supported about 450,000 jobs in the U.K. last year, about half of which were in Scotland, the report said.