Environmental study of proposed oil drilling near Jan Mayen will proceed in the near future, despite strong opposition of environmentalist, according to Reuters.
Jan Mayen is a Norwegian archipelago north of Iceland. The Map shows the EEZ around Jan Mayen, which Norway is entitled to.
Ola Borten Moe, Minister of Petroleum and Energy in Norway, confirmed that formal studies and reports will go ahead.
"An impact assessment of Jan Mayen is ... important," Moe said in a statement. "It will cast light on important aspects of opening up for petroleum activities."
The length of the study is still unknown but if there are no major environmental or other hurdles, oil companies could be licensed to look for reserves across 100,000 sq km (38,600 square miles) of ocean.
The last time a new area was opened to exploration in Norwegian territorial waters was 1994, the ministry said.
Oil reserves are thought to be in the area, Iceland is also hoping to discover oil in the Dreki area, close to Jan Mayen. Iceland has invited for bids for oil search in the area, the bidding closes in February 2012.