Pipeline Magazine spoke exclusively with Salem Bin Ashoor, General Manager and Chief Representative, BP UAE about the significance of BP winning a stake in Abu Dhabi’s lucrative onshore concession
Can you give an overview of BP’s presence in UAE and of the company activities in 2016?
We have shareholdings in the country’s operating companies including joint venture partnerships with Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and shareholdings in Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Petroleum Operations Ltd (ADCO) (BP share 10 per cent), Abu Dhabi Marine Operating Company (now called ADNOC Offshore) (BP share 14.67 per cent), Abu Dhabi Gas Liquefaction Company (now called ADNOC LNG) (BP share 10 per cent), and the National Gas Shipping Company (now called ADNOC Logistics & Services) (BP share 10 per cent). We remain committed to make important contributions to Abu Dhabi’s operating companies, bringing BP’s global scale, expertise and technology that make us the right partner for the long term and continue playing a key role in Abu Dhabi’ oil industry for many years to come. Abu Dhabi is important for BP. Our current production from Abu Dhabi is around 260,000 barrels of oil per day, which is a good contribution to BP’s overall portfolio. Abu Dhabi is also an important investor in BP with the Abu Dhabi Government holding a 2 per cent stake in BP.
At the end of last year BP secured an innovatively structured deal to gain access to Abu Dhabi’s lucrative onshore concession. How was this conceived and to what extent will these types of structures come to dominate the sector?
First of all, I’d like to say how pleased I am that the renewal of our partnership in the ADCO concession continues BP’s long relationship with Abu Dhabi that stretches back to the 1930s. It marks a new phase in our relationship both with Abu Dhabi and in particular with ADNOC as long-term “strategic” partners.
We understand the responsibility and value the trust placed in BP by ADNOC, and the leadership of the Abu Dhabi government in awarding part of this concession to us. In terms of its structure, I see it as a win-win for both parties. BP has chosen to be a partner and an asset lead for very material and cost-competitive oil resources, while ADNOC has become an important strategic shareholder in BP. I believe this is an innovative and historically significant deal that benefits both companies.
A big portion of BP’s reserves are situated in the Middle East (as of last year, 47.3 per cent). Considering that, how important a role does the UAE play in BP’s regional portfolio?
BP is the top International Oil Company (IOC) investor in the Middle East & North Africa, according to an important Wood Mackenzie report in 2016. BP is also managing over 5.5 million barrels per day in the Middle East with our oil company partners, and we are on a journey to producing over 1.5 billion cubic feet of gas per day in Oman. Our shareholdings in the country’s operating companies include joint venture partnerships with ADNOC, ADCO (now called ADNOC Onshore), ADMA (now called ADNOC Offshore), ADGAS (now called ADNOC LNG) and NGSCO (now called ADNOC Logistics & Services).
What does BP bring to the National Oil Companies and how is BP working to maximise recovery from assets here in the UAE?
Technology and innovation is a key player in the oil and gas industry, particularly here in Abu Dhabi, with a target to achieve recovery factors of 70 per cent from its world-class oil fields. We are working in partnerships with ADNOC and our Joint Ventures to maximise resource discovery and recovery through the application of our global expertise and upstream technology.
This includes the need for smart and tailored technology to maintain the plateau production rate in giant fields, such as enhanced oil recovery (EOR) techniques and technologies. This will be required to achieve the stated goal, coupled with the right expertise and experience to execute these technologies efficiently and in a commercially viable way. We can see the opportunity in the long term to raise recovery rates from oilfields in Abu Dhabi to 60-70 per cent from current levels of around 30-40 per cent.
BP is a leader in deploying EOR schemes and has developed several proprietary technologies, such as low salinity water injection (LoSal), to help recover more oil from reservoirs. Additionally, BP is a leader in water flood technology, a type of enhanced oil recovery (EOR). We are maximising recovery from some of the world’s largest reservoirs and from maturing fields such as in Azerbaijan, Iraq, Russia and the US.