Photo: Reuters/Andy Buchanan

More new oil and gasfields were approved in the first half of this year than over all of 2016, the Financial Times reports, as conventional producers fight back against competition from US shale.

Average development costs have fallen 40% since 2014, according to energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie, allowing companies to invest in an era of lower prices.

“It has taken almost three years to reach this stage because back in 2015 quite a lot of people thought the oil price drop was just a blip,” Readul Islam, analyst at Norwegian research firm Rystad Energy was quoted as saying.

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