The role as Trade Operator has existed on the NCS since 1973. The Geodata Trade Operator (GTO) has been a trade operator for licenses on the Norwegian Continental Shelf since 2002.
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Geodata Trade Operator 

The objective of Geodata Trade Operator (GTO) is to ensure best possible flow of data between all oil companies on the Norwegian Continental Shelf by centralized administration of the data exchange process.

Geodata Trade Operator shall ensure that all data owners benefit as equal as possible from the trades they participate in. 

Geodata Trade Operator is organized as a legal entity within the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association. Geodata Trade Operator has a separate board and budget. The employees are employed by the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association.

Trade Operator General Guidelines

The agreement regarding use of a Trade Operator is defined in the Joint Operating Agreement (JOA), section 26. In accordance, a contract is established between the individual production license and the Trade Operator.

The Licence Management Committee (MC) selects the Trade Operator on the first Licence MC meeting. There can only be one Trade Operator for the Licence. The Trade Operator shall be notified as soon as possible.

The Trade Operator administrates all trades, purchases and sales of data to and from the licence.

Geodata Trade Operator handles the role as Trade Operator based on a non-profit principle.
A system for sharing actual costs is developed and referred to as “The Availability fee”. This is a licence fee and the costs are shared between the companies in the licence.