Oil company deal postpones North Slope drilling

Two oil companies say they are shifting their ownership split on an oil field development project in Alaska and will delay work planned for this winter.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports that putting off drilling this winter means delaying 500 jobs for Slope contractors.

The agreement between Spanish energy company Repsol and Denver-based Armstrong Oil and Gas Inc. gives Armstrong the majority ownership in the project, which they say will involve a big new oil field in the Colville River Delta area.

Armstrong said in a statement that it will take majority shares of both the development area and the exploration area, where the companies have drilled 16 wildcat and appraisal wells over the past four years.

Armstrong and Repsol announced promising results from two exploration wells in June.