(Adds Equinor comments on project stakes)
OSLO, July 26 (Reuters) - Norway’s oil and gas firm Equinor said it expects to decide in 2020 whether to develop the deepwater Bay du Nord project offshore Canada, in which it holds a 65 percent stake.
In a joint statement with Canada’s Newfoundland and Labrador province and its Canadian partner Husky Energy, the firm said it had finalised a framework agreement for the site, some 500 kilometres from the coast.
The project, which will target nearly 300 million barrels of oil reserves, is expected to be sanctioned in 2020, with production starting in 2025, the government said in a statement.
“There is no final investment decision yet... we aim (to make the decision) in 2020,” Equinor’s spokesman in Oslo said.
The agreement provides an option for the province’s energy company to take an up to 10 percent stake in the project, and in that case Equinor’s ownership would be reduced to 58.5 percent and Husky’s to 31.5 percent, from a current 35 percent, he added.
The Norwegian company operates in a total of five discoveries offshore Newfoundland, a harsh environment with seasonal icebergs. (Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis Editing by Alexandra Hudson)