After over 20 years, Norway is once again awarding zone exploration licenses for oil and gas extraction. "Today, we are opening a new chapter in the history of the Norwegian petroleum industry," said Tord Lien, Norway’s Minister of petroleum and energy, "for the first time in 20 years, we offer new acreage for exploration." The Oslo government’s decision undoubtedly opens up a new race for Arctic drilling, despite high production costs and the area’s low profitability. Out of the 10 new licenses awarded, 3 are for zones within the Barents Sea which, for 40 areas were cause of contention with Russia. The debate ended in 2010 with an agreement that drew a boundary between the 2 countries.