Premier Oil has commenced oil production from the $850m Solan field located in block 205/26a of production license P164 in the UK North Sea.
The firm said that the first producer well is being naturally flowed at a deliberately restricted initial rate.
Premier Oil plans to close production following an initial period to complete a series of tasks, including final commissioning of the water injection plant, tie in of the second water injection well and preparation for the tie in of the second producer well (P2).
First oil production was initially planned in the fourth quarter of 2015 but was delayed due to unprecedented weather conditions, reported BBC News.
The firm is currently drilling the second producer well using the Ocean Valiant rig with tie in planned by mid-year. The well intersected some 1,500ft of high quality reservoir sands.
Production from the field is expected to reach between 20,000 and 25,000 barrels of oil per day in the second half of this year.
Located west of the Shetland Islands in 135m deep waters, the Solan oil field is expected to produce more than 44 million barrels of oil during its 20 years of operation life.
In 2015, Premier Oil has obtained 100% ownership in the Solan field development in the UK Continental Shelf, with the acquisition of 40% interest from Chyrsaor.
Premier Oil agreed to pay up to $3m a year, and up to $100m in royalty payments after Chyrsaor repays an outstanding loan of $530m.
Image: Premier Oil-operated Solan field is expected to produce more than 44 million barrels of oil. Photo: courtesy of Premier Oil.