Proving better insight into the UAE O&G industry

MazrouieThe EIC Connect 2017 in Abu Dhabi took place on 23 May with the aim of highlighting opportunities to UK companies in the Middle East oil and gas producing nations

UAE Minister of Energy HE Suhail Al Mazrouei inaugurated the conference at Dusit Thani Hotel in Abu Dhabi and the high profile meeting was attended by global IOCs namely Total, Shell and BP, besides ADNOC.

The discussions mainly revolved around how to maximise E&P value and optimise operations at a time when the oil price hovers just above US$50.

During panel discussions on the UAE’s O&G market, Robin Mills, CEO, Qamar Energy, said that with stability gaining on the oil prices, the NOCs in the Middle East have to now think of operating oil and gas fields with lower costs and long-term planning together with IOCs for successful returns. He also added that restructuring and cost cutting are short term and the companies must look to strategising their business plans better.

Following on  from Mills, Hatem Nuseibeh, president and group representative, Total UAE, said that companies cannot control the oil prices but they can definitely control the spending. He mentioned that Total had seen the oil price crash coming in 2014 and hence was prepared to take on the ‘depression’.

BP’s chief representative and general manager Salem Ashoor also argued that the IOCs and NOCs have to look at getting more value out of the spend. He recommended that vendors and SMEs can play a great role in the O&G value chain, especially midstream and downstream.

“Be fit at 50”, chanted Shell’s country chair Ali Al-Janabi. He stated that companies need to start doing more with less revenue. “Prices will adjust but will not come easy anymore. We need to look forward and change accordingly.”

All the four panellists spoke highly of ADNOC stating how the NOC is slowly transforming and thinking like an IOC. The UAE-owned company is looking at the return of investment (RoI) of its assets now, which was not the case earlier, said Nuseibeh. However, there needs to be more push coming to ADNOC for fulfilling its projects at home, and beyond, Mills reiterated.

Meanwhile, the UAE is also not without challenges. The IOCs echoed that with local talent onboard, UAE O&G industry needs to push for better skillsets and develop Emiratisation. The country must also be open to new technology and not just look at the cost but also at the RoI. Shell’s Al-Janabi said ADNOC must move with the technology shift and look into joint creation of values.

Total also spoke about the adopting of newer technology by ADNOC and providing easy access to SMEs.

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