Pipeline Magazine - Interviews Interviews-RSS Feed Sat, 21 Apr 2018 01:00:20 GMT Connectivity, data analysis key for asset management transformation https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/connectivity-data-analysis-key-for-asset-management-transformation/ Georges El Mir, vice president - Oil and Gas for Europe and Africa at Schneider Electric speaks to Pipeline Magazine about urgent needs in asset management to optimise oil and gas companies’ operations 2018-04-17 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/connectivity-data-analysis-key-for-asset-management-transformation/

Georges El Mir, vice president - Oil and Gas for Europe and Africa at Schneider Electric speaks to Pipeline Magazine about urgent needs in asset management to optimise oil and gas companies’ operations

What are priorities you see that need to be addressed in asset management systems implementation in GCC/ Middle East?

In the era of the Internet of Things and Industry 4.0, the biggest priority in the Arabian Gulf’s oil and gas asset management is the need to connect the assets, collect the data and analyse it as part of wider digital transformation agendas to enhance their asset management journeys. Energy firms that are early adopters of the convergence of IT and OT can gain new opportunities for collaboration, driving profits, and maximising return on capital on assets throughout their lifecycle.

What core operations are changing with new and advanced asset management systems?

Arabian Gulf oil and gas firms will be able to harness the power of four key themes for their asset management transformation: digitising the mobile workforce with augmented reality, achieve operational excellence, leverage open connectivity to share data in real-time, and use cloud and predictive analytics to prevent asset failures. This will lead to lowering the maintenance cost and reducing idle and unscheduled downtime.

How can asset management systems help reduce cost and improve productivity?

Deployment of cost effective wireless sensors, easy cloud connectivity (including WAN) and data analytics, will improve asset performance. These tools allow data to be easily gathered from the field and converted into actionable information in real time. This will result in better business decisions and forward looking decision-making processes as well as solutions that optimise and stabilise process performance and reduce energy usage, thereby achieving the highest level of performance and reliability from critical assets. Moreover, predictive maintenance and machine learning is providing fault prediction capabilities, allowing to prevent unplanned downtime, therefore drastically reducing the cost of these outages. It also allows a better planning of maintenance actions, hence reducing operators’ presence on the fields and improving the safety environment for operators. Showing the business benefits of digital transformation, Schneider Electric customers that have implemented asset performance management strategies have improved asset utilisation by 30 per cent, reduced unplanned downtime by 25 per cent, and increased asset availability by 20 per cent.

What is the scope of business growth in Middle East in this area?

In the upstream the main target of the oil and gas players is to maximise their production while operating efficiently. Digital oilfields are a pressing topic in the Arabian Gulf, with a major focus on asset management to increase profitability and efficiency. As oil prices have rebounded, the early adopters of digital asset management, tied to wider digital transformation strategies and upskilling of staff, are seeing stronger competitiveness and will be ideally-positioned to withstand long-term market shocks. The region will also see massive investment in the downstream where more and more integration will happen with the aim of value creation and throughput maximisation. In the region, Schneider Electric is exchanging best practices with the leading oil and gas firms on their digital transformation. For example, we are enabling Kuwait Oil Company to train employees on how to address refinery tasks quickly and efficiently with smart and immersive virtual reality training.

How much is this related to a general adoption of digitalisation in the region?

The Arabian Gulf’s digital transformation is definitely having a major impact on the oil, gas, and energy sectors, as firms look to maximise return on assets, bridge the IT/OT gap, reduce unscheduled downtime, optimise asset utilisation, and increase operational efficiency. We’ve reached a “tipping point” in digital transformation for energy firms – it is no longer an ‘if’, but a ‘when’, as energy firms that are early adopters of digital transformation are seizing market share. In the coming months, we expect increased interest and take-up of pivotal technologies such as the cloud, the Industrial Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and augmented and virtual reality, which can serve as the next step in business catalysts and digital transformation.

]]>
Proserv focuses on Saudisation https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/proserv-focuses-on-saudisation/ Gordon Geekie, general manager, Proserv Arabia Saudia spoke to Pipeline Magazine about Proserv’s Saudi Arabia business and why they have focused on achieving greater Saudisation. 2018-04-12 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/proserv-focuses-on-saudisation/

Gordon Geekie, general manager, Proserv Arabia Saudia spoke to Pipeline Magazine about Proserv’s Saudi Arabia business and why they have focused on achieving greater Saudisation.

Proserv is a global leader and a fresh alternative in the delivery of engineering and technical services to the energy, process and utility markets. Supporting clients for the lifecycle of their assets,the firm operates in more than six regions throughout 22 facilities and 12 countries, offering 24/7 local support services.

Core to the Proserv offering is its ability to manufacture, deliver and support solutions locally by its highly experienced pool of technicians, engineers and project teams. Proserv is an Aramco Approved Manufacturing and Service Facility with over 50 per cent achieved Saudisation.

You head up Proserv’s Saudi Arabia unit. Can you tell us about it?
Proserv has been serving Aramco for over 30 years, mainly through our legacy brands, approved Proserv manufacturing facilities in Dubai and our service centre in Abu Dhabi.  
We believe in adding value to the local supply chain and creating jobs and opportunities for the people in the communities in which we operate, so working with our JV partner (Bandariyah International Company – BIC) to establish Proserv Arabia Saudia (PAS) was a natural development.  
We’ve transferred technology from our global sites to the new business in Saudi Arabia, invested heavily in our facility and put a great team in place. Having secured our Aramco plant ID and 9COM approvals to manufacture production equipment this year, it’s clear we’ve made the right decision.  

What advice would you give to other companies expanding into new markets?
Proserv has embraced the potential of Saudisation, exceeding the localisation targets, resulting in PAS achieving a platinum rating with the Saudi Ministry of Labour.
For us, Saudisation is a great opportunity to add diversity to our workforce by including Saudi nationals and embracing their culture. Having a strong in-house learning and development programme enables us to train our KSA employees to world-class standards. We are constantly running technical training programmes for new employees in our global facilities, as well as hosting our own online learning platform - Proserv Academy.
Saudi Arabia is an exciting place to be and we are proud to support its Vision 2030. We share those aims and look forward to being part of the country’s future successes.
We feel that businesses should empower local talent and support the country to grow. This has worked to great effect in our other locations such as Nigeria, Indonesia and Singapore.  

Collaboration is a word often bandied around by operators and contractors alike. How does PAS view collaboration?
With over 40 years of experience we can draw on a wealth of internal experience and collaboration to deliver technology and services to the market.
In KSA not only do we have a whole host of legacy brands which we work with, we also have  service agreements with complementary production equipment OEMs to allow us to service their equipment both infield and at our PAS service centre.
We also work closely with our clients, to not just fix problems but to actually understand why it happened in the first place and stop it from reoccurring. Of course, it takes time to build up that level of trust, but once you have it, it really pays off.

How does Proserv help its clients extend the lives of their assets?
In today’s market, no one can afford to wait for breakdowns to happen. Responding to breakdowns should be the exception, certainly not the norm. We are supporting our clients in planning and executing successful and effective maintenance operations and to break away from the ‘fix it when it breaks’ mentality.
By reducing the need to always replace old with new equipment, we can make real savings. We have countless examples where we have been able to repair or upgrade existing equipment for our clients, who would have traditionally bought a new replacement asset.
Our ultimate goal is to prevent or minimise operational down time, ensure efficiency and thereby increase assets’ productivity and reliability. This can be achieved through implementing a preventative maintenance programme – something we can do or train our clients to do.
We’ve also developed a web based asset management site. This assists our clients in mapping their assets and managing and planning optimal maintenance and to control their cost. 

 

]]>
CIRCOR bullish on Middle East energy growth https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/circor-bullish-on-middle-east-energy-growth/ Scott Buckhout, president and CEO of CIRCOR, speaks to Pipeline Magazine about the oil and gas flow control manufacturing and services business outlook and strategy 2018-04-08 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/circor-bullish-on-middle-east-energy-growth/

Scott Buckhout, president and CEO of CIRCOR, speaks to Pipeline Magazine about the oil and gas flow control manufacturing and services business outlook and strategy

What significance does the Middle East market hold for CIRCOR, in terms of revenue?

If you are in oil and gas, you have to be in the Middle East. This is a key region for CIRCOR across the company. We recently opened our new Middle East hub at JAFZA One in Dubai to complement our existing Pipeline Engineering manufacturing facility in the Jebel Ali Free Zone.

At the Middle East hub, we have built out our technical and commercial expertise, bringing in a team of applications engineers and service engineers from eight countries, speaking 10 languages. Our primary goal is to ensure our customers get the best technical advice and service locally. Our Middle East team brings deep experience across a broad range of flow control technologies.

Considering CIRCOR’s growth strategy, what route are you looking at for this region? Organic growth, acquisitions or JV’s?

Our strategy is to solve complex customer application problems with the best technology. We have a broad portfolio of leading technologies across a range of applications. We have expanded the range through internal product innovation as well as acquisitions. 

We recently announced the acquisition of Colfax’s Fluid Handling business, bringing a portfolio of the world’s leading severe-service pump technologies to CIRCOR. The company has a history of innovation that has produced an impressive portfolio of products and patents. This technology is all driven by an experienced group of engineers, well known for developing high-quality, specialised solutions for customers.

In addition, just over a year ago we acquired Delta Valve and TapcoEnpro, creating our refinery valve product line, again addressing some of the most severe service refining applications.

In recent years we have established key partnership agreements across the region and expanded CIRCOR’s physical presence. These investments across the region are an important part of our success. 

What is your business outlook for the Middle East?  

Our business outlook is positive.  Macroeconomic trends are favourable in the region. In addition, we expect to see significant growth resulting from our larger physical presence, our expanded product portfolio, and our strategic partnerships.  While we are bullish in near term market trends, we are committed to the region and investing for the long term.  

In which areas do you see opportunity for CIRCOR in this region?

We have a strong product technology portfolio and a good mix of solutions and services that cater to the oil and gas and power generation markets, where we expect to see strong growth. CIRCOR will continue to expand its capabilities in the energy value stream, focusing on global infrastructure build outs and severe service applications where our expertise is recognised across the world.

Do you anticipate challenges going forward from the higher but volatile oil prices?

To some degree, yes; but we expect to be part of the solution.  Asset owners will continue to drive growth as they look to extend the life of more mature field projects like Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR).  We will use our after sales service and overhaul capability to support our customers and ensure their facilities stay operational longer with the highest degree of safety. We will continue to differentiate CIRCOR with our applications expertise in high sour content across the region to ensure we are our customers’ preferred long term partner.

We also see opportunity with the diversification of economies away from the oil and gas market. New cities being built in Saudi Arabia and the Expo 2020 in Dubai will bring new infrastructure opportunities for years to come.

There is a lot going on across the region. It is an exciting time to be in the Middle East.

]]>
Bringing plant performance into focus https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/bringing-plant-performance-into-focus/ Ali Vezvaei President & CEO, Bilfinger Middle East spoke exclusively with Pipeline Magazine’s Julian Walker about bringing engineering plant performance more into focus 2018-04-03 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/april/bringing-plant-performance-into-focus/

Ali Vezvaei President & CEO, Bilfinger Middle East spoke exclusively with Pipeline Magazine’s Julian Walker about bringing engineering plant performance more into focus and highlighted the impressive portfolio of services the company has provided in the Middle East over the last 50 years

Bilfinger is a major international engineering and service provider to a broad range of industries. Headquartered in Germany, the firm’s history goes back to 1880.

The group is primarily active in Europe, Middle East and North America. The company boasts 36,000 employees and generated revenue of just over €4 billion in the financial year 2017.

Bilfinger group is made up of a range of companies around the world including Tebodin, Babcock, Salamis, Rotring and GreyLogix to name a few.

“With these companies Bilfinger can address our focused geographies around the world. The Bilfinger brand has been on the rise in the Middle East thanks to our broad engineering and technology competence, as well as extensive local presence in the region,” said Vezvaei.

Vezvaei explained: Bilfinger was structured and re-focused on key industries when Tom Blades took over as chairman of the executive board in July 2016. We reframed our activities on two service lines, four regions and six industries, or what we call our “2-4-6 strategy”. It is designed to capitalize on Bilfinger’s value propositions towards the primary industries.”

Bilfinger delivers its services in two business segments: Engineering & Technologies (E&T) as well as Maintenance, Modifications & Operations (MMO).

“The portfolio connects the CAPEX and OPEX hemispheres and covers the entire value chain from consulting, engineering, manufacturing, fabrication, assembly to asset integrity, maintenance, plant expansion as well as turnarounds. It also provides environmental technologies and digital solutions,” added Vezvaei.

 

Middle East focus

Bilfinger has been present in the Middle East for nearly half a century and has built a strong footprint in UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar and Egypt.

“We inaugurated our new Saudi headquarters in Damman in mid-March with our chairman of the board present. It is an additional investment by Bilfinger in the Kingdom and a sign of our commitment to the country’s Vision 2030,” said Vezvaei.

Bilfinger Middle East primarily serves the chemical, petrochemical, oil and gas as well as energy utility sectors. It has more than 4,000 employees across the region and does almost a quarter of a billion dollars of business.

“In the hydrocarbon sector, our offerings range from FEED, full field development and other engineering services to integrated projects, asset integrity all the way to furnace repair and revamp in world-class petrochemical assets,” Vezvaei noted.

In the UAE, Bilfinger works on a range of projects in the upstream and the downstream sector.

“In terms of in-country presence in the UAE we have nearly 2,000 people, including our investments in facilities in ICAD in Abu Dhabi’s industrial zone. We work very closely with industry players in Abu Dhabi where we provide not only engineering services but lifecycle services as well. On the refining side we have done business with ADNOC companies for years.”

He added: “On the energy side, we serve power generation assets with more than 22 GW of total capacity. We also provide innovative water solutions that are aimed to considerably contribute from efficiency and sustainability point of view. Bilfinger has also been involved in major capital projects such as EGA projects in UAE.”

Recently, Bilfinger was awarded a multimillion dollar contract by the Ministry of Electricity and Water in Kuwait for work in their power and desalination plants. The company also secured another multi-million dollar deal in Saudi Arabia’s hydrocarbon industry.

 

Growing digital offering

Vezvaei said: “The Middle East characteristics make it a strategic market for us at Bilfinger. They are 1) the focus on enhanced productivity across the hydrocarbon value chain 2) increasing energy demand and the need for enhanced efficiency, 3) aging assets and the focus on enhanced safety and reliability and 4) diversification of the industrial space; they are reshaping the regional markets and creating new opportunities for collaboration and growth.”

Vezvaei explained that the firm’s strategy is built upon helping its customers in addressing these industrial paradigm shifts and creating more value from their assets or reducing the cost of delivering what they currently do. It could be summarised in “engineering and delivering plant performance”.

“Our presence inside many of these plants and our understanding of how they function are key. What we do through our digitisation team is to build plants’ digital twin. This is where equipment, piping and other components of an assets get smartly interconnected in the cloud. All lifecycle data of these plant components - engineering, operations and maintenance are brought together and analysed. This is the journey from descriptive (reactive) to predictive and ultimately to prescriptive.” he added.

Recently, Bilfinger has also doubled down on its efforts to bring its digital services to Middle East’s process industry that is searching for more productivity, reliability and efficiency. This is to help make more with the same.

“In addition to our standard offering as explained earlier, there is a range of specialised offering that include engineering services for asset integrity, life extension, capacity debottlenecking or our proprietary O&M optimisation solutions such BMA® and BMC® or the digitisation solutions like our BCAP® that are geared to enhance productivity, reduce cost and lean up customers’ OPEX spectrum,” he said.

According to Vezvaei, the BMC®, BCAP® and Bilfinger Reliability Advisor will be the main focus for the company in 2018.

 

Key regional opportunities

One of the most exciting opportunities in the region, according to Vezvaei, is in increasing the “productivity per barrel or barrel equivalent.”

“As the shale producers continue to reduce cost per well, the conventional producers in the Middle East in particular, need not just to rely on their naturally lower E&P cost but to squeeze the dollar from every step of the value chain. It requires an unconventional view towards the CAPEX and OPEX hemispheres, one that recognises interlinks and capitalises on the synergies.

Examples here could include optimisation of the O&M regimes and considerable spend there, rationalising the cost of availability, heat and energy balance per barrel and the waste to value streams.” Vezvaei said that oil and gas companies might be surprised how much value is trapped in these areas. The other area to look at is around modifications.

They are intended either to address capacity debottlenecking or to increase yield and up the process plants’ performance by way of small upgrades.

“A very strategic opportunity is around water treatment, whether in energy - utilities or the produced water in the hydrocarbon sector. The amount of water used in the process, the energy consumed to produce that water and the waste are all weighing heavily on asset owners and operators. Use of more innovative solutions to better address the water stream should be a top priority,” he said. Another pressing area that Vezvaei sees an opportunity is what he called “natural gas liberation”. “There is quite an amount of natural gas used to generate power in the region or injected to help recover oil.

Considering the thermal efficiency as well as the industry’s financial returns comparison to the cash cost that those gas molecules could yield when converted into valuable down-stream products, deploying measures to free up the gas seem to be justified.

The oil price and its volatility on the other hand also indicate a need for alternative molecules for injection, so that this strategic gas molecule could be put into a more accretive value chain.

This diversification towards the downstream will also act as a natural hedge in countering oil cycles, like the one the industry is just recovering from,” he said.

Vezvaei believes that the potential lies in enhanced process efficiency, conversion, addressing non-main stream gas, moving towards hybrid thermal-solar power generation and in the oil front looking at innovative solutions with CO2 and sour gas. Vezvaei talked about some interesting pipeline solutions the company has developed.

“Our services for this sector range from sophisticated SCADA systems to hot-tapping and composite repair. Last year, we launched a strategic cooperation with Henkel on an innovative repair solution called Loctite where piping and pipelines could be repaired live without operational interruptions.”

 

Moving forward

Vezvaei summarised what Bilfinger’s long history in the region means for its future.

“Over the past nearly 50 years, we have established a strong regional footprint from both engineering and technology point of view as well as the human capital for our plant services. With thousands of qualified personnel, modern fabrication facilities, pilot plants and most importantly technology and solutions that have been developed by the region for the region, we have not only successfully transferred the German know-how and expertise, but also we have begun the journey of true localisation and sustainability.”

]]>
Emerson digital drive https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/march/emerson-digital-drive/ Jeff Householder (President of Emerson Automation Solutions, Middle East and Africa) conversed with Pipeline Magazine’s Julian Walker about Emerson’s big push in the field of IIoT and how they are moving to digitise oil and gas enterprises from the well through to final product distribution. 2018-03-29 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/march/emerson-digital-drive/

Jeff Householder (President of Emerson Automation Solutions, Middle East and Africa) conversed with Pipeline Magazine’s Julian Walker about Emerson’s big push in the field of IIoT and how they are moving to digitise oil and gas enterprises from the well through to final product distribution. Emerson is investing heavily in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) with their Plantweb Digital Ecosystem, a comprehensive IIoT automation platform, as the U.S. firm sees a greater demand for wireless technology.

Householder believes that he took the position as Emerson Middle East and Africa’s President at a time when the oil and gas business landscape was beginning to improve.

“The business outlook has improved and we have seen a welcome change in the mood of the market. We really feel that the oil and gas industry has turned a corner. The stressed oil prices have caused a lot of strain for the economies in the region but now we are seeing activity return,” he said. Householder said that the first quarter of the financial year for Emerson, which starts in October, has been very positive.

“We have consistently improved our year on year performance on a monthly basis and we expect this to continue through 2018. We are also optimistic over the next two to three years that we are going to see increased investment in the region. We are seeing the right signs for a rebound in the Middle East market,” pointed out Householder.

Strong investment

Emerson has made a valuable investment commitment to Saudi Arabia, as evidenced by the inauguration of a new technology and collaboration centre at Dhahran Techno Valley in January of this year. The investment Emerson made in the facility amounts to US$25 million.

“We have made a big investment in Saudi Arabia, which is a major market for us. We have a long-term investment programme in the Kingdom. Our DTV facility in Dhahran Techno Valley is now our new headquarters for the Western Region. Besides being an engineering and service centre, it is also a research and development centre specifically around our IIoT efforts. We have initiated collaboration workshops with King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM); Saudi Aramco Process & Control Systems Department; Saudi Aramco Exploration and Petroleum Engineering Center - Advanced Research Center (EXPEC ARC); Dhahran Techno Valley Company; and the Ministry of Education and Small & Medium Enterprise Support Group for Eastern Province,” said Householder.

He stated that the new facility in the Kingdom will help Emerson deliver innovative new technologies. In addition to the investment in the new facility, Emerson has also increased its manufacturing capability in the Kingdom.

“We were recently awarded by Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) the license to directly trade with our customers inside the Kingdom and that is an important milestone for us. Saudi Arabia has a very exciting future ahead and there is an opportunity to work collaboratively with the government to expand industrial investment within the Kingdom and we want to be part of it,” noted Householder.

Push for Industrial Internet of Things

In the digital space, Emerson is seeing a lot of changes to how customers can make the best out of their products and technology.

“For us, IIoT starts in the field. We start with the sensor and we build a broad portfolio of devices around the sensor. These devices are intelligent and provide a broad array of information related to their application and their environment. Diagnostic data is served together with process data to applications and systems that perform high value analytics. When we look at what customers really want to accomplish inside of IIoT, it starts in the field or the plant floor and then ultimately to the enterprise level. We need to ensure that the data you get is of highest quality and is secure,” said Householder.

He discussed the growing importance of safety in the industry. “Our sensing has gone well beyond the state of process control and a lot of it now enters the safety and environmental realms. For example, corrosion sensing. We have multiple solutions for non-intrusive corrosion monitoring that can be installed without penetrations to the pipe.

These solutions can even be provided wirelessly. Our customers typically know the locations in their piping systems that are at risk for corrosion, especially facilities that have been in operation for some time. The trick is adding these measurement points without disruption to the plant or increasing the risk to their people.”

Householder explained that Emerson is aware that there can be some scepticism surrounding cloud technology.

“We know our customers are at very different levels of acceptance when it comes to the use of cloud-based technologies and services. We emphasise to our customers that we have multiple architectural options for IIoT that can be provided within the plant walls, behind their IT firewalls. We also have enterprise level solutions that can be isolated or connected to the cloud”, he said. Householder added: “The reaction in the market for what we do has been very positive. The key is our flexibility in adapting our OT strategies within their IT structure and policies.”

Greater demand for wireless

Emerson is seeing a greater demand for wireless technology. “The adoption curve for wireless products is growing quite rapidly.

We have a number of customers, especially around wellheads, who have taken up wireless in a big way over the last couple of years.

Customers are driving the need for more data and they need expanded analytics for that data,” said Householder. “This is driving our development of IIoT based products and has contributed to our acquisition strategy.”

Emerson has made a number of acquisitions in 2016 and 2017 that will aid in evolving the digital drive such as Geofields and Paradigm. These acquisitions strengthen Emerson’s push into the digital oil field and expands Emerson’s SCADA offerings. The Pentair Valves & Controls acquisitions in 2017 dramatically expanded our ability to provide valve solutions for our customers.

“We now have a broad array of Isolation and Pressure Management products and solutions within our portfolio of supply. In 2016, we bought Permasense that added non-intrusive wireless corrosion monitoring to our corrosion solutions and complements our current offerings within our Roxar organisation. These are exciting times for us. We are working in an expanding market and at the same time increasing our ability to add value and solutions for our customers,” Householder concluded.

]]>
Collaboration at the heart of Halliburton’s strategy https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/march/collaboration-at-the-heart-of-halliburton-s-strategy/ Osama Abdel Halim, Egypt and Libya Area Manger for Halliburton talks about the growing importance of the Egypt market and why collaboration is key to its growth strategy. 2018-03-18 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/march/collaboration-at-the-heart-of-halliburton-s-strategy/

Osama Abdel Halim, Egypt and Libya Area Manger for Halliburton talks about the growing importance of the Egypt market and why collaboration is key to its growth strategy.

How important is the Egyptian market for Halliburton?
Egypt is a member of OAPEC (Organisation of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries), which includes 11 different Arabian countries of the Middle East and it has one of the region’s oldest upstream sectors. With low operating costs – at less than US$10 per barrel for onshore production – and a favourable exchange rate, the country has managed to attract new interest, with a spate of recently-announced or expected deals.

Halliburton Egypt was founded in 1968 to provide oilfield services in the region. With more than 1,000 employees the company maintains a strong regional footprint to collaborate with our customers around solutions that maximise their asset value. We’re engaged with almost all the E&P operators in Egypt and continue to strengthen our investments in the country as a result of the positive outlook and demand for new technologies.

Did you see increased activity in Egypt last year?
Generally activity levels in 2017 have slightly improved.  Compared to 2015 and 2016, production output has already been on the rise this year and the government released figures show 5.1 billion cubic feet per day of production, a 0.7 billion cubic increase from last year, thanks to the opening of new major projects. The Zohr field completed development procedures last February and began production before the end of the year, a critical step toward Egypt’s goal of natural gas self-sufficiency by the end of 2018.

What is your outlook for the Egyptian oil and gas sector in 2018?
After a decade of regulatory and energy policy changes, Egypt is on track as the largest and fastest growing natural gas market in Africa and is enjoying a re-invigorated upstream gas sector based on the giant Zohr discovery, approval for West Nile Delta (WND) and a range of other gas developments tied back to spare gas process plant capacity.
Future competitiveness and efficient functioning of the Egyptian gas market, both domestically and within the increasingly integrated global gas and LNG markets, relies on aligning of several stars. In summary, significant gas demand growth is likely to be driven by growth in gas-fired power generation, growing industrial and chemical sector demand and an increased requirement for gas for LNG exports. Longer term, if the upstream sector in Egypt and the wider region is able to capitalise on cost efficiencies and better use of regional gas infrastructure, LNG exports from Egypt may become more attractive, especially if done on positive marginal cash flow rather than based on new capital.

What projects are you focusing on in Egypt?
Halliburton is focused on strategic offshore deep water projects such as the Zohr development,  West Nile Delta and others. Additionally, we are also engaged with major onshore operations in the Western Desert for a number of operators.

How will Halliburton be able to take advantage of the returning optimism to the industry?
Halliburton’s key factor for success is adhering to and implementing our unique value proposition which is continuous engagement and collaboration with the customer to provide solutions that maximise their asset value. Collaboration is what makes Halliburton unique as we understand our customer’s drivers in much greater detail than other service companies. We provide explicit information that can help increase production and lower costs. This is Halliburton at its best, and it shows customers the clear difference between our approach and our competitors.

How can you help the Egypt oil and gas industry expand?
The Egypt market is diversified operationally and covers a wide array of areas such as deepwater,  mature fields and unconventionals. Several challenging applications are currently taking place including high pressure and high temperature wells which require specific technologies to withstand harsh environments and are vital to successful and efficient operations. By providing customers with the right solution that aligns with their drivers, we are able to help increase production and lower costs, to ensure the development and production of Egypt reservoirs are profitable and grow long-term.

How did you manage to deal with the downturn?
The oilfield services sector in Egypt was affected by the downturn in global oil prices and the impact was more substantial than previous downturns.
Many companies changed their operation strategies, reduced budget spending and directed investments to low cost onshore projects that can deliver quick cash flow and have low risk end exposure. Halliburton focused on efficiency by removing waste from our processes, doing more with less and implementing a continuous improvement strategy across the company to drive new ideas that reduce costs while enhancing service quality. We believe that the company is strongly positioned to provide customers with solutions that drive greater returns.

Are you seeing an improved drilling market in Egypt?
International investment institutions and other companies are watching the developments in Egypt with a hopeful eye.  Egypt is expected to experience significant economic improvement and a decrease in inflation rates thanks to increased foreign spending, mostly in oil and gas, and substantial interest rate cut by the Central Bank of Egypt.
According to a report on the Egyptian economy more than half of the foreign $4.1billion in direct investment in the fourth quarter of 2016 went to the oil and gas sector.  Halliburton is optimistic in the long-term viability of Egypt’s reserves, but the short-term drilling market is expected to remain flat during 2018 unless a major oil price improvement occurs which might have a quick impact on onshore drilling activities in Western Desert Area.

What new technology are you looking to introduce this year?
Halliburton is planning to introduce several key technologies for the deepwater, unconventional and mature fields market. They include:
• CoreVault
• DecisionSpace – Virtual Reality
• JetPulse High-Speed Telemetry Service
• SmartPlex Downhole Control System
• SPECTRUM FUSION Hybrid Coiled Tubing System
• Turbopower Turbodrills

How important is Egyps for the Egyptian oil and gas market?
It’s extremely important as EGYPS is North Africa’s most important oil and gas exhibition and conference. It is the gateway to new opportunities within the country and presents an all-inclusive platform where buyers meet suppliers, visitors meet industry trade professionals and delegates learn from leaders within the global oil and gas industry.  Halliburton is proud to be a sponsor of the event and share how our technologies can help operators increase production and lower costs.

]]>
Substantial technology demand in the Middle East https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/march/substantial-technology-demand-in-the-middle-east/ Luq Niazi, IBM Global managing director, Chemical & Petroleum Industries speaks about IBM’s commitment to serving technology in the oil and gas sector 2018-03-13 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/march/substantial-technology-demand-in-the-middle-east/

Luq Niazi, IBM Global managing director, Chemical & Petroleum Industries speaks about IBM’s commitment to serving technology in the oil and gas sector.

IBM is a very substantial technology and services organisation and in the industry context the global company has a global business services dimension.

Luq Niazi is one of IBM’s 12 global industry leaders.

“We cover 12 industries globally. We have global industry offerings that take technologies like cloud, IIoT, cognitive and blockchain components and fuses them together with our R&D and services capabilities,” said Niazi.

He added: “What makes IBM unique is that we are one of these companies that have this broad capability across all the technologies through to deep services capability, combined with a deep R&D capability. We have over 3,000 researchers around the world in a network of 12 research labs.”

According to Niazi, the oil price dimension is really driving change in terms of innovation across the entirety of the value chain. “The whole dynamic across the value chain is driving the need for the next level of innovation in core business processes. That is why digital transformation is so relevant. It is enabling new levels of performance and efficiency,” he said.

Middle East digital drive

IBM works with many of the big oil and gas companies in the Middle East region and all of these companies, to varying degrees, are looking to adopt digital technology.

“The Middle East is a key area for us as it is in a very important geography,” said Niazi.

“We are seeing the adoption of digital in various parts of the business to drive value and higher performance,” explained Niazi.

One area that is seeing increased attention is cognitive technology.

“The application of AI is really important in the oil and gas industry. If you look across the value chain of cognitive application 60 per cent is used in the upstream part of the industry and 40 per cent in downstream and chemicals. The reasons why is the complexity and value of the decisions are larger in the upstream. This is driving a need for AI solutions,” explained Niazi.

In conclusion, Niazi said: “We want to be the digital reinvention partner of our clients in an open way that they can achieve by using all these technologies and applying them in a targeted way. We see really substantial growth opportunity for our clients and for IBM.”

]]>
Moving towards a decarbonised future through efficiencies https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/february/moving-towards-a-decarbonised-future-through-efficiencies/ Wayne Jones, chief sales officer at MAN Diesel & Turbo speaks to Pipeline Magazine about how to increase efficiency and lower the environmental footprint of hydrocarbon production and processing 2018-02-25 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/february/moving-towards-a-decarbonised-future-through-efficiencies/

Wayne Jones, chief sales officer at MAN Diesel & Turbo speaks to Pipeline Magazine about how to increase efficiency and lower the environmental footprint of hydrocarbon production and processing

How long have you been involved in the oil & gas sector?

MAN Diesel & Turbo has been a strong partner of the oil and gas industry for almost 40 years. Across the Middle East, we are able to look back on numerous projects with EPC contractors, as well as with state owned and international oil and gas producers.  More than 450 of our machines are installed in the Middle East region.  I personally have been working in this sector for over 25 years.

What area do you focus on?

Our product range includes compressors and expanders, as well as industrial gas and steam turbines for downstream, midstream and upstream applications.  This unique range of portfolio makes us a system partner for the industry where we can support through the entire life cycle of the asset.

Where are you located within the Middle East / GCC region?

Dubai is our regional centre for all business operations in the Middle East and Africa.  In 2017, we opened our new office increasing our local workforce to over 100 employees.  We are also operating MAN Primeserv workshops in Dubai, Fujairah, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Kenya and three in South Africa and we are expanding our network in the region with a new workshop in Oman which will open in the next few months.  We want to be able to offer maximum flexibility to our customers as local as possible and we will continue to invest to support this goal.

What is your outlook for the oil and gas sector?

I still believe that the industry will be under severe pressure for the next two or three years.  Therefore, from an economy based on oil and gas, we are developing towards a largely decarbonised future.  With oil prices under pressure, efficiency will become even more important for all companies operating in this sector.  This trend works to our benefit, as efficient technology is what the MAN brand stands for since 1758. 

Our groundbreaking subsea technology for instance has just been awarded the Platts Global Energy Award.  It reduces the carbon footprint and increases the efficiency of exploration.  Furthermore, we offer technologies like the modular and scalable ReTPac® (Refinery Train Package), which addresses the increasing need for flexibility and cost efficiency of the refinery industry.

On the way to a carbon neutral global economy natural gas will, without doubt, fuel the first phase of that change, significantly lowering the carbon balance of energy generation and global transportation.

A good example of this is how the oil and gas industry is increasingly investing in the processing of accompanying gases, which until now have often been ‘flared off’.  Along with the clear economic advantages of this process the environment obviously benefits greatly from reducing flaring and venting.  For this purpose, nine MAN compressor trains will be deployed in Kuwait’s Burgan Field for the Kuwait Oil Company (KOC), enabling to process accompanying gases and improve the quality of the oil produced.

In future we will further fortify our position as transformational partner of the industry offering solutions to increase efficiency and lower the environmental footprint of hydrocarbon production and processing.

What are you looking towards in the coming year, in terms of your business outlook?

Overall the market situation will remain challenging, but we expect a solid year.  With regards to the Middle East region, MAN will further expand its local connections and continue to be a strong partner for the industry in this region.  Also we will continue to play a leading role in decentralised energy generation, e.g. in Saudi Arabia where we are engaged in many projects.

]]>
MENA security spending on the rise as risk awareness expands https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/february/mena-security-spending-on-the-rise-as-risk-awareness-expands/ Gartner’s senior research analyst Sam Olyaei speaks to Pipeline Magazine about the company’s new research on security investment and insight into the Middle East oil and gas industry security risks 2018-02-18 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/february/mena-security-spending-on-the-rise-as-risk-awareness-expands/

Gartner’s senior research analyst Sam Olyaei speaks to Pipeline Magazine’s Nadia Saleem about the company’s new research on security investment and insight into the Middle East oil and gas industry security risks

Security services will continue to be the fastest growing segment in line with global trends, especially IT outsourcing, consulting, and implementation services, Gartner said in a new research. The growth for security services will be driven by ongoing skills shortages in the information security domain as well as increased awareness of threats.

In a region where oil and gas industry is critical to many local economies, convergence of operational technology (OT), Internet of Things (IoT), and IT is pushing many organisations to start considering how to handle the potential new security vulnerabilities created. This will result in additional interest to invest in security products and services to mitigate these new risks that traditional information security practices are not accustomed to, Gartner said.

 

What is Middle East’s portion of the global spend on cyber security investment in 2017? What is driving the growth?

MENA has spent US$1.8 billion in 2017 on security, seeing an 11 percent increase over the year before. Worldwide, there will be a total $86.4 billion spent on IT security in 2017. In MENA, we expect another double-digit per cent growth in the next two years, with risks driving the spending.

IT security risks are a primary driver of security spending in a majority of organisations, especially due to two main factors: an increased awareness of threats, and an ongoing skills shortage in information security. While organisations cannot control the threats, they can control the security risks to their own environment.

As a result, Middle East organisations need to implement a risk-based security program – especially addressing basic security and risk processes. Leaders need to invest in patch management, vulnerability scanning, centralised log management, internal network segmentation, backups, and systems hardening.

Meanwhile, security outsourcing is becoming the largest security service market in 2020, as companies, especially for SMEs that have smaller recruiting budgets and talent pools. The main cause of security outsourcing is that there is a massive talent shortage in security – leading to gaps in implementing security programs, gaps in coverage, stalled projects, and increased risk of breaches. To address the talent need, organisations will need to adopt new recruiting processes. However, with emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things requiring skills that do not exist yet, many organisations are turning to innovations such as advanced analytics, business algorithms, and machine learning to ramp up security processes.

In the convergence of IT and OT with the Internet of Things, and the Industrial Internet of Things, we are seeing both privacy and safety implications. For example, an incident in an oil and gas firm’s IT environment could cause the loss of some data records and potentially a fine. But an incident in the OT environment could potentially cause loss of life or a safety hazard.

 

What is the breakdown for the oil and gas sector specifically?

We don’t publish a figure for this breakdown. Middle East oil and gas companies are investing in cyber security solutions at a higher rate compared to the global average of oil and gas firms.

 

In oil and gas, where are most of the spending focused?

Most of the oil and gas spend is focused on protecting critical infrastructure, securing the convergence of IT/OT/IOT, incidents that if successful can force plant shutdowns, utility interruptions, monetary loss and even human hazard at its extreme.

However spend is mostly focused on perimeter security technologies. There isn’t enough investment in detection/response techniques nor is there in people and process.

 

Where are the vulnerabilities yet to be addressed?

Attackers are using exploits to gain access to critical infrastructure and sensitive data and most of these exploits are either commonly identified or released, or are have been known by the organisation for at least a year. Again the biggest vulnerabilities right now for oil and gas is in its critical infrastructure and OT environment.

 

What is the risk scenario - is it increasing, or becoming more sophisticated?

Threats are always on the rise. In the Middle East we see a combination of monetised and weaponised malware that spreads mainly through phishing and social engineering. The motivation behind these threats can be grouped into either Nation State Attacks/Entities associated with nation states that intend to destruct, or individuals that are looking for monetary value or ransom.

However, it’s important to note that the risk scenario is less about the external threats and more about the specific risks that an organisation itself faces. All enterprises should treat state threats as part of the usual advanced threats. While certain verticals and industries need more focused actions, much of being prepared for state-sponsored threats and ransomware comes down to best-practice level safeguards.

Ransomware can also be prevented across basics such as system patching; EPP updates, configurations, and extensions; endpoint detection and response solutions; network perimeter and segmentation; administrative and system protection; and backups.

 

At what level is awareness for cyber risks and how does the Middle East tend to approach it?

Awareness of cybersecurity risks/attacks is becoming better but the region still lags behind North America and Europe. Cybersecurity is still not a priority for executives/board members and is being treated as a function of IT when in reality it should be a business function.

Similarly, we are not spending enough on people and process. In this region specifically, we try to solve every problem with a technology or a product. We need to educate our people/employees, provide them with the right tools to succeed and formalise processes around these tools. Often times, it is not the lack of spend, but rather the lack of process that causes an incident to wreak havoc.

]]>
Egypt’s energy future promises new opportunities https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/february/egypt-s-energy-future-promises-new-opportunities/ Tarek El Molla, Egypt’s Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources speaks to Pipeline Magazine ahead of the Egypt Petroleum Show about the country’s new oil and gas investment opportunities and new petroleum projects 2018-02-11 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/february/egypt-s-energy-future-promises-new-opportunities/

Tarek El Molla, Egypt’s Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources speaks to Pipeline Magazine ahead of the Egypt Petroleum Show in February about the country’s new oil and gas investment opportunities and new petroleum projects that will meet domestic needs as wells as make it an exporter and a regional energy hub

 

Can you summarise Egypt’s new petroleum and gas strategy?

The Ministry of Petroleum adopted a new integrated strategy in the petroleum, gas and mineral resources domains, in which its primary targets are ensuring energy security, fulfilling local demand requirements, achieving value-added and optimal utilisation of Egypt’s natural resources, in addition to raising human resources qualifications and efficiency.

The strategy consists of several axis that aims at narrowing the gap between production and consumption throughout a five-year plan, supported by short and long term plans by reforming the subsidies and managing energy demand, plus encouraging and attracting new investments in exploration and development domains. Fast-tracking development of new gas discoveries, enhancing infrastructure, developing petrochemical industries, diversifying Egypt’s energy mix and increasing its efficiency, transforming Egypt into a regional hub for trading and exchanging gas and oil, restructuring the petroleum and gas sector in addition to developing mineral resources.

To ensure the success of the strategy’s goals, we are currently implementing the petroleum sector’s Modernisation Project, which aims at realising the petroleum sector’s full potential by 2021 as a sustainable development engine and a role model for the modern Egypt.

 

What are the factors behind the restoration of the oil and gas upstream agreements in Egypt? And what are the new opportunities in the domain that EGYPS 2018 participants should be aware of?

Signing of new agreements came to a protracted halt for three years due to the challenges the country experienced in the aftermath of the 30 June 2013 revolution. Recently, Egypt has witnessed the inflow of major investments from IOC’s operating in the country due to the political stability and solutions implemented by the petroleum sector to incentivise our partners into pumping more investments.

 These solutions include a commitment to payments of IOC’s arrears as well as including investment-attracting clauses in new agreements that create stability for all parties.

Due to these solutions, the petroleum sector succeeded in concluding new petroleum upstream agreements and increasing investments in developing discovered fields which in turn led to achieving huge and promising discoveries in the Mediterranean.

We’ve signed 83 new upstream agreements during the recent period with investments valued at about US$15.5 billion.

There is no doubt that producing areas in Egypt have enormous and promising oil and gas potential. For example, the Mediterranean has witnessed consecutive success stories of natural gas exploration and production in offshore deep water.

We still aspire to achieve further gas discoveries in this region for its distinct potentials in different geological layers or in the onshore Nile Delta, Western Desert and Gulf of Suez areas, where we aim to intensify our exploratory activities in a way that leads to achieving new discoveries, which in turn will bolster the production of our petroleum resources.

We continue to review available areas at the Western and Eastern Deserts and the Suez Canal along with taking the needed procedures preluding to offering the areas in international bid rounds for investors interested to invest in oil and gas domains in Egypt.

The exclusive economic zone at the Red Sea will be of interest to investors in the exploration domain, where we intend to offer the first upstream bid–round in the Red Sea during 2018, based upon the results by specialised companies in aggregating geological data for that region.

Out of the Ministry’s interest in attracting more investments, the petroleum sector’s development and Modernisation Project includes a work programme with specific mechanisms dedicated to attracting more investments through the development of the bidding system in the exploration domain, simplification of procedures, and the shortening of timelines to create an attractive investment climate in the petroleum sector.

 What is the significance of the refining and petrochemical sectors?

We believe the development of the refining industry will achieve some of Egypt’s vital objectives such as bolstering fuel supplies, meeting the growing domestic demand of petroleum products (gasoline, diesel, LPG) and reducing the pressure on foreign currency.

Developing the refineries is one of the main axis of the programme of transforming Egypt into a regional hub for trading and exchanging oil and gas. Therefore, we are currently implementing an ambitious work programme to develop and upgrade the efficiency of refineries, which includes the establishment of new refining projects and development of existing ones with investments of over $8.2 billion in Cairo, Suez, Alexandria, and Assiuot, in order to increase the efficiency of domestic refining capacities.

During 2018, the largest project in the refining industry, the Egyptian Refining Project in the Mostorod region in Cairo, will be completed with investments of over $3.7 billion, while the rest of the projects will be completed successively.

As for the petrochemical industry, it is the driving force of development that contributes to maximising the value added of petroleum resources, along with providing the products and materials on which complementary industries are based. It provides a wide domestic production of projects needed by the Egyptian market, as well as direct and indirect job opportunities.

Egypt possess all the factors needed for a distinct petrochemical industry at the Suez Canal in cooperation with the Japanese to set up the project in the economic zone of the axis of the development of the Suez Canal with investments exceeding $3 billion. It is the only complex being developed in the region in cooperation with EGPC and Tsu Shou, in the establishment of such major projects.

It is planned to complete the detailed feasibility study of the complex by the end of the first quarter 2018 and to be put on the production map by 2021, producing about 3.5 million tons per year of petrochemical products; propylene and ethylene derivatives.

Part of its production will be used to cover the needs of the domestic market, and export the rest to global markets, which will increase the State’s economic return from such a large project.

There are also projects under study and development namely propylene and its derivatives at the expansions of Sidpec Co, ammonia and its derivatives at ANRPC co., and formaldehyde and its derivatives production project. Furthermore, the second phase of the project will increase ethane extraction of the Western Desert Gas Complex.

 What are your ambitions for the second edition of EGYPS?

Organising the second edition of EGYPS on Egyptian grounds is considered a significant and leading step for all major players in the oil and gas industry whether regionally or globally to participate in a unique industry gathering to discuss the future of the petroleum industry in Egypt, taking a closer look on available investment opportunities in all related activities of the industry, as well as a bonding platform for Egypt with its oil and gas resources development partners.

Personally, I aspire that the second edition of the Egypt Petroleum Show will deliver a rich and effective discussion opportunity that achieves aspired goals and to present successful models and experiences that serves the development of the petroleum and gas industry in Egypt as well as bolstering the efforts of modernising this vital sector.

]]>
Digitalisation to make oil and gas exploration cheaper https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/january/digitalisation-to-make-oil-and-gas-exploration-cheaper/ Khalid Bin Hadi, senior executive vice president and head of Oil, Gas & Petrochemical, at Siemens Middle East speaks about the impact of digitalisation on the oil and gas industry 2018-01-21 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/january/digitalisation-to-make-oil-and-gas-exploration-cheaper/

Khalid Bin Hadi, senior executive vice president and head of Oil, Gas & Petrochemical, at Siemens Middle East speaks to Pipeline Magazine’s Nadia Saleem about the impact on the oil and gas industry through digitalisation

 

How important is digitalisation for Middle East oil and gas industry to drive efficiencies and sustainability?

Digitalisation is very important to oil and gas companies in the region, as it delivers tremendous benefits. Over the last ten years, Siemens has invested over US$8.5 billion to make digitalisation a core part of its own business transformation.

What role can digitalisation play in enhancing operations for oil and gas firms?

Siemens can provide customised solutions and services for the entire lifecycle of oil and gas companies’ operations. In the current oil price environment, driving CAPEX and OPEX down is keeping the industry awake at night. Customers need long-term solutions to maximise production from existing assets and develop new resources. Technological innovations and solutions for upstream, midstream and downstream applications, with modular solutions for both brownfield and greenfield projects, can significantly cut costs and substantially enhance quality and safety.

How efficient is investment in this direction amid volatile and low oil prices?

In a challenging oil price environment, the oil and gas industry players need to adjust to new realities. Innovative solutions and technologies are crucial to bolstering safety, increasing reliability, driving efficiency - and contributing to the Middle East’s energy development and socioeconomic growth. Oil and gas will remain the backbone of the global energy supply for decades to come. But to keep up demand and sustainable operations, adopting innovative technology is a must.

What tools/technology is Siemens working on to advance these efforts?

We are continuously developing new technologies and solutions to address our customers’ challenges. One exciting development in this area is ‘Marine Image Processing’. We know that a significant amount of the world’s gas reserves is located below the sea floor. Siemens has brought together image analysis technologies used in medicine, so they can be used to detect sources of oil and gas below the sea floor. The result is that the software can be better than the experts. This is new prototype software and it could soon make oil and gas exploration cheaper and more efficient. Considering that survey vessels can cost tens of thousands of euros per day to operate, using the new tool to search for oil and gas will not only be more efficient but will result in substantial savings. Another important digital potential for oil and gas companies is seamlessly integrating data to enhance operational efficiency and safety in offshore environments. We provide automated process analytics and software tools to collect and prepare data. This supports improved decision-making, helping reduce operational costs and expand the lifespan of equipment. These are only a few of the innovations that can be useful in the industry and we have many others.

What are the key challenges in regional oil and gas companies adopting digitalisation?

One of the main challenges, as companies adopt digitalisation and become more connected, is keeping their assets secure. At ADIPEC, Siemens will show its full portfolio of products and solutions aimed at keeping critical infrastructure safe from cyber security threats, taking customers on a journey which brings maturity to their cyber enterprise.

What role can ADIPEC play in informing and advancing this industrialisation shift?

ADIPEC is an important platform for regional and global oil and gas companies to discuss industry challenges as well as the opportunities presented by digitalisation. At ADIPEC, for example, Siemens will be demonstrating how digital technologies can address cost, efficiency and security challenges in the sector. With the right combination of solutions, services and products, companies can boost productivity and competitiveness and increase safety and reliability while cutting costs, even in an environment of low oil prices.

]]>
Vallourec brings customised technical solutions to the Middle East https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/january/vallourec-brings-customised-technical-solutions-to-the-middle-east/ Philippe Crouzet, chairman of the management board at Valloureec, speaks to Pipeline Magazine about the company’s new direction in the Middle East 2018-01-14 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/january/vallourec-brings-customised-technical-solutions-to-the-middle-east/

Philippe Crouzet, chairman of the management board at Valloureec, speaks to Pipeline Magazine’s Nadia Saleem about the company’s new direction in the Middle East

 

What is the significance of the Middle East market for Vallourec’s global business?

We are positioning the Middle East at the centre of our policy and strategy as well as investments because we consider the region to be committed to growing at a consistent level, which is important to us.

The policies of the governments in OPEC as well as NOCs in this region have shown more continuity and been much more consistent compared to others.  They have continued drilling here, while many IOCs have reduced capex considerably.

We are talking about hundreds of million dollars in investments by the NOCs in the Middle East, this creates stability and continuity to grow our business here. We bring products from Europe, Brazil, and China and finish the production in the GCC because it is the centre of the most resilient oil market and the most committed to sustainable growth.

We are in close communication with NOCs in the GCC and we are developing long-term strategies with them. That is why we have decided to locate our Asia and Middle East regional offices in Dubai.

 

You’ve recently signed an agreement with Badr El Din Petroleum Company (BAPETCO). What other such opportunities are you pursuing?

Tendering activities by GCC operators are ongoing and there is more to come. Saudi Aramco has quarterly tendering with plans for mega-tenders for years to come. We respond to these tenders and are hopeful of success in the future.

Other opportunities here include ADNOC and Kuwait Oil Company’s multi-year tenders.

We believe we have the unique opportunity to supply for the whole chain.

 

Where in the Middle East do you see opportunity for growth in the current challenging market?

Gas is a top priority for all our customers and this leads them to look for tight gas as well as oil. We have a great experience there, being the leading supplier for tight oil and gas in North America. Offshore drilling for gas is as well one of our specialties – for our customers, this is new here and an opportunity for us.

It is a way for them to ramp up production and for us to increase our footprint.

Secondly, GCC customers are willing to manage their capital much more efficiently now. This was not a priority before when cash was abundant due to high oil prices. We can bring many solutions that we have developed globally for our customers to manage inventories and reduce bulk capex.

These arguments were sort of out of the picture in this region before, but even Saudi Arabia is raising debt financing and they are concerned about how to deploy capital.

Additionally, our customers want to keep growing their downstream business and be less of a raw product supplier. We see business growing in that area, with more demand for pipes and our distribution expertise.

 

What sets Vallourec apart from others? What is your core strength and advantage?

As Vallourec, we are able to bring more value to our customers. Firstly, we bring competitiveness. We have restructured our business to concentrate on the most valuable assets in Europe and we have added new capacity in China, precisely designed and dedicated for customers in the Middle East.

So it is Vallourec’s fully-owned Chinese products that support Middle East NOCs. This is supporting our regional offices in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Dammam, Saudi Arabia, where products from Brazil and China are finished.

Our second advantage is product innovation, which itself has two aspects: we offer our customers a wide range of drilling products and we are capable of manufacturing those products in the region, where localisation is more important.

Thirdly, we plan to support our customers in the region by extending our services offering. This is new to GCC but growing rapidly in other regions. NOCs are considering refocusing their resources on the core business of production as well as downstream. We are increasingly offering a package that includes not only our products, but also services to manage their inventories. This is something our GCC customers are considering for more value extraction.

We are also trying to encourage front-end innovation to better understand on what customers are struggling and provide new solutions.

 

Are you having to specialise products for GCC customers?

We have industrialised products for Aramco in our Dammam facility on their request. These are products required for drilling under the city of Dammam.

These products were originally designed for United States shale, but we have expanded them to Indonesia and now the Middle East. This shows our production setup is world class.  

There is higher demand for specific products from NOCs in GCC because they have higher technical requirements now in order to reach the same production level as before. Oil is not that easy here anymore and the maturing fields demand EOR as an example. Additionally, sands become more corrosive over time, so people here are more aware of the environment and corrosion rates.

 

Are you noticing new industry trends in terms of contracts/procurement?

Regional clients are increasingly looking at long-term contracts to facilitate an integrated and optimised full value chain.  

Typically, NOCs would work on one-year frame agreements, but large inventories are a concern for them because they are looking to reduce blocked capital by shortening the supply chain.

We are working with NOCs to see how we can package the products and services to deliver them when they are really needed. This will provide better visibility and require less capital.

Also, our customers are looking to optimise their assets and pipes are an asset. This is in terms of design, cost, and use of assets. That is what we can bring to the table for our Middle East customers to integrate into their supply chain.

]]>
Innovating technology, leading the way https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/january/innovating-technology-leading-the-way/ Rebecca Liebert, CEO of Honeywell UOP, spoke exclusively about the importance of building innovative technology and why they had such a strong 2017 in the Middle East with a series of project wins. 2018-01-07 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2018/january/innovating-technology-leading-the-way/

Rebecca Liebert, CEO of Honeywell UOP, spoke exclusively to Pipeline Magazine’s Julian Walker about the importance of building innovative technology and why they had such a strong 2017 in the Middle East with a series of project wins.

As the dust settles on 2017, Rebecca Liebert, who was on her fourth visit to the Middle East, can feel a sense of real achievement at Honeywell UOP, a licensor of refining and petrochemical process technology, could boast a string of wins right across the region from Saudi Arabia to Jordan and Kuwait throughout the year.

Rebecca took over as president and CEO of Honeywell UOP in April 2016 right in the middle of the oil industry’s downturn which only just started showing green shoots of recovery at the tail end of 2017.

Liebert said: “We really spent the time during the downturn thinking and building for the future. We built upon the Honeywell Connected Plant concept during the downturn with the launch of our Connect Plant Services (CPS) which is part of Honeywell UOP’s cloud-based services that anticipate operational complications and offer real-time solutions.”

She added: “It was a challenge sailing through the choppy low oil price environment. We tried to be really smart in how we were investing during the downturn so that we could come out of things stronger. We have been focused and believed that integrated refinery and petrochemical complex was going to be the way of the future.”

Honeywell UOP’s focus on innovative technologies that could enable greater integration is certainly paying off in the Middle East.

“This year we launched our energy efficient LD Parex™ aromatics complex, which dramatically lowers energy, CAPEX and OPEX versus other alternatives. This has been a big hit. We have just won the Kuwait Integrated Petroleum Industries Company (KIPIC) refinery deal that will have our LD Parex technology incorporated in it,” explained Liebert.

Honeywell UOP announced the KIPIC deal in November of 2017 which will see the Kuwait firm use a range of process technologies from Honeywell UOP for the expansion of its refining and petrochemical complex at Al-Zour, south of Kuwait City.

“The KIPIC deal really heated up in the 6 months before it was signed. They had a tight schedule and we made sure that we delivered on time to meet all the schedules.

We know it was tough competition and we are honoured to be partners with KIPIC and work on this big project. We were thrilled towin all three blocks. We think by delivering all three packages, we will be able to givethem all the efficiencies and economies they are looking for,” said Liebert.

She added: “We also spent a lot of time focusing on propane dehydrogenation (PDH) units and our own Oleflex™ technology. We, in fact, launched our next generation Oleflex technology, which will be incorporated in the KIPIC refinery.”

Strong year in the Middle East Honeywell UOP’s series of wins last year in the region are proof that its focus on innovative technology has paid off.

“I think we have had a strong track record this year in the Middle East. At the start of the year we signed up AL WAHA Petrochemicals Company with PDH Unit at its plant in Jubail that will use our IIoT- based CPS. We also signed a deal with Kuwait Paraxylene Production Co. (KPPC) to use our Connected Plant Services to improve the performance of its aromatics complex,” Liebert noted.

According to Liebert both projects are moving forward nicely.

“On top of that in May we signed an MoU with Saudi Aramco for the Honeywell Connected Plant in conjunction with the In-Kingdom Total Value Add (IKTVA) program. This is a Honeywell wide initiative. We are looking at the Honeywell Connected offering In-Kingdom to be targeted and fit for purpose,” she added.

In May, Honeywell UOP also won the Jordan Petroleum Refinery Company (JPRC) contract. Then in July, Farabi Petrochemicals Co. in Saudi Arabia announced that is going to go forward with a LAB complex in Yanbu to expand its production of biodegradable detergents.

In the UAE, Takreer (now ADNOC Refining) have a PDH unit that Honeywell UOP sold a couple of years ago that is now getting ready to start up and Honeywell UOP is doing a lot of service and training, including supplying the catalyst etc.

Liebert was impressed how quickly the Middle East region has come back as the market was fairly quiet.

Technology heartbeat

“2017 has been focused on getting new technologies out and ensuring our customers understood the value of these technologies in the marketplace today. We will never stop that next-generation technology development,” Liebert insisted.

She added: “As I look to next year the Honeywell Connected Plant is going to continue to be a big part of what we are doing. We have built it out as we started with the core UOP process technology and  building out solutions for those platforming units. Now it is time to go to the full complex with things like crude distillation units and sulphur units. These aren’t technologies we normally supply ourselves. So we are partnering to bring in those non-UOP licensed technologies into our solution.”

Looking to next year and beyond, Liebert said that a big part of what Honeywell UOP will be doing is continuing to build up people training and service as customers are asking more and more for that.

“With the growth we are seeing in the region, there isn’t the human capital trained to run these plants yet. In Dubai, we have a dedicated training group that runs a series of training programmes.”

An area that Honeywell UOP wants to continue to innovate in 2018 is how they help project execution in the region.

“Actually a part of the KIPIC win was to integrate FEED into our license and schedule development so we are going to deliver a FEED package plus a process technology package. We expect to see more and more of this modular package route. We can typically cut significant time off the schedule as we have designed the units before. Wehave a lot of economies of scale and we can drive the modular solution at a much more rapid time frame. We think this can be a real innovator for the region to help speed up projects build time,” she said.

Bullish outlook for petrochemicals

Liebert is very positive on the outlook for the petrochemical industry.

“I don’t see any slowdown in petrochemicals in the foreseeable future. We are planning for peak oil demand to go into refined products in 2030’s. We think a lot of it will be taken up by petrochemicals and see huge potential for more integration of refineries.”

One area that will see a lot of activity in the interim that is going to drive refineries are clean fuels.

“We launched our ISOALKY, a new alkylation technology last year. It uses Ionic liquids alkylation as an alternative to traditional technologies that use hydrofluoric or sulfuric acids as a liquid alkylation catalyst. This technique will grow as more companies look to become greener. Honeywell UOP launched this technology in conjunction with Chevron, who is building a plant in the U.S. that should be up and running in a couple of years.

]]>
Trent success first for region and TS&S boost https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/trent-success-first-for-region-and-tss-boost/ General Manager Ali Alhosani speaks about the Turbine Services & Solutions (TS&S) recent operational success and looking at turbine repair opportunities ahead 2017-12-24 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/trent-success-first-for-region-and-tss-boost/

Turbine Services & Solutions (TS&S) was among the companies feeling the breeze of confidence arguably returning to the energy business - and the halls of ADIPEC.

The company added to that with news that it had delivered the first full life overhaul 50,000-hour service on a Siemens Industrial Trent gas (SGT-A65TR) turbine. This establishes TS&S as a world renowned centre for skilled turbine repair services in the UAE and broader Middle East.

TS&S was accredited last year as the first independently owned, specialised and independent MRO provider with the capability to support both the Industrial Trent WLE and DLE variants for Siemens, becoming the first non-OEM Trent MRO provider globally with this capability.

“We are proud we did the first overhaul of the Trent 60 Industrial globally. We are the only organisation outside the network of Siemens, authorised by Siemens. There are currently more Trents undergoing overhauls in our shop,” said General Manager Ali Alhosani.

Siemens and TS&S have cultivated strong ties since establishing a partnership in 2007 to build the full life overhaul capability on the Industrial Trent gas turbine. TS&S achieved this with the help of Siemens skilled engineers and technical support and training teams, headquartered in UK, over the last 12 months. TS&S engineers and technicians are now qualified to perform independently for future repair and overhaul services.

“We are building within the group synergies between Mubadala companies,” said Alhosani. “We don’t need to duplicate capabilities and equipment; this synergy building gives us a high advantage.” The GM also says TS&S has benefitted from the cost savings by operators in various verticals within industry choosing to repair rather than renew.

With much of the talk in the ADIPEC’s many panel sessions suggesting the price crisis has made companies work smarter, that repair scenario is set to continue.

“Everybody is cost cutting and this makes us benefit on maintenance, repair and overhaul - we are having an increase in our business and revenue.

“We feel optimistic this year. The business is growing at a steady pace. We have challenges; however we believe that we are going in the right direction.”

Ali Alhosani added: “TS&S is providing comprehensive integrated solutions. We are not only working on the gas turbine – it is our core business along with the rotating equipment – but we are going beyond that with our partners.

“We are working with our customers and providing customised solutions for them.”

The TS&S boss was confident ADIPEC could also bear further fruit for the company.

“ADIPEC is one of the right venues for us; meeting all the experts for new, innovative ideas, for serving our customers. We can see the OEMs, the customers and suppliers working together to overcome the situation.”

Alhosani said being part of Mubadala has greatly assisted TS&S towards positive results, with more to follow.

“Mubadala is a pioneering investor that is accelerating the UAE’s economic growth with an innovative approach to strategic investment.

]]>
Promoting growth through integration of value chain https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/promoting-growth-through-integration-of-value-chain/ Khalifa Al Suwaidi, executive director, Refining and Petrochemicals, Mubadala Investment Company talks about driving expansion in the petrochemical sector 2017-12-19 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/promoting-growth-through-integration-of-value-chain/

Khalifa Al Suwaidi, executive director, Refining and Petrochemicals, Mubadala Investment Company talks about driving expansion in the petrochemical sector

Following the merger how has the rest of 2017 been for Mubadala?

As a company, we have had a very exciting start to business as a new company. We have already been engaged with some substantial investments and we have healthy global portfolio.

Our global refining and petrochemical portfolio spans the petrochemicals supply value chain from the US, to Europe, through the Middle-East to Japan. The value of the portfolio is over US$41 billion and comprises 32.7 per cent of the Mubadala Investment Company.

In petrochemicals, we are one of the top five producers in the global polyolefins market and companies in our portfolio include the 4th largest ethylene producer in the US. The E&P operations produce 500,000 barrels per day.

We are the leading global producer of LAB - linear alkyl benzene (LAB) - the most common raw material in the production of biodegradable detergents (Cepsa).

Overall, I think the market is buoyant. Between 2007 and 2017, 212 new petrochemicals producers entered the industry, this is a 20 per cent increase, which is surprisingly high. The growth in the petrochemicals market is set to outstrip the growth in global GDP. We see a lot of diversification and change and there will be many investment opportunities.

 

How is Mubadala approaching the need to integrate its business and what are other companies doing?

For Mubadala, the main challenges around integration vary across the petroleum and petrochemicals platform and depend on the markets in which we operate. If we look to Japan, it is a mature market, which means that the focus is on diversification of products and applications while improving performance at plant level.

If you look to other parts of South East Asia, they are developing markets, so the focus is on supplying enough base chemicals to support their economic growth.

Thinking strategically, we are very clear that business sustainability and profitability will come from integration across the whole value chain.

The producers are focusing on going further downstream and working closely with their customers to make the applications and compounds they require. Future growth will come from companies who build partnerships based on scale, petrochemical experience and technology.

What are your thoughts on market expansion?

China and India will continue as significant drivers of demand across the industry. Pakistan is also a very interesting market, where our own asset Parco is expanding their midstream and refining business.

As a market, Europe is a mature market. Companies are seeking to expand their portfolio by considering more speciality chemicals. In North America, the expansion of shale gas is creating new opportunities based on competitive feedstock, and all the indicators are that it will continue to be an interesting market. We will see these trends emerging in other regions as they grow and mature.

We are very focused on applying our learnings from developed markets to developing markets, and this knowledge sharing is at the core of our business.

What is driving the change in partnerships between IOCs and NOCs?

The change in the relationship between IOC and NOC activity has been very interesting to watch. Over the last two decades, we have seen an increase joint venture activity between the two. Traditionally I think the NOCS have been slower to move downstream and diversify.

Today, this mentality is changing. NOCS are starting to understand that moving downstream helps them capture more value. It also enables them to sustain business through periods of price volatility and creates a natural hedge to their business.

When crude was high above $80, $90 or even $100, perhaps there was not much need or focus for diversifying portfolios. Some NOCS did not see or understand the market potential in petrochemicals. Now we see NOCS working with IOCS to develop technology and access new markets; this is a significant change in market dynamics.

Looking ahead what are the things that petrochemicals companies need to focus on to grow?

Two things spring to mind: the first is the investment in R&D and adapting rapidly to change. Investment in innovation is important because over the last decade producers have been very focused on chasing the demand for base chemicals in the Chinese market, and not enough capital has gone into R&D. This is an industry trend and we need to drive innovation to create the new applications and sophisticated products required by the market, in partnership with our customers. As an industry, we need to move quickly. I sense a disruption is coming to the petrochemicals market.

Think of all the innovators and inventors who are working today to design the next wave of smart products and the devices required for the growth of the automotive, infrastructure, medical, and other industries. The petrochemicals industry is vital to creating the applications that will make these inventions a reality.

]]>
ARDECO sees ADIPEC success as driver for industry growth https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/ardeco-sees-adipec-success-as-driver-for-industry-growth/ Arab Development Establishment (ARDECO) is one the UAE’s foremost diversified business enterprises with operations spanning a broad range of industries. 2017-12-17 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/ardeco-sees-adipec-success-as-driver-for-industry-growth/

Arab Development Establishment (ARDECO) is one the UAE’s foremost diversified business enterprises with operations spanning a broad range of industries.

Established in 1980. ARDECO initially concentrated on the oil and gas and the power and water sectors. Subsequently, it diversified into a variety of other fields including petrochemicals, real estate, contracting, manufacturing and services.

In the oil, gas and petrochemical sector, the group is active in mechanical, engineering, construction, electrical.

The group has consistently experienced significant growth in its operations through active representation and joint venture tie-ups with foreign companies, internal growth, establishment of independent operations, and acquisition of other UAE business.

Through emphasising on quality in its operations and a policy of Partners for Success with its principals and other business partners, ARDECO has positioned itself prominently in every field in which it has chosen to operate.

ARDECO Chairman Yousef Mohammed Ali Al Nowais in an interview at ADIPEC said the show was an unprecedented success for the company. “The high turnover of people, the huge level of interest to build the oil, gas and petrochemical industry is tremendous,” Al Nowais said.

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has been a great support for the development of small and private oil and gas companies in Abu Dhabi, Al Nowais said, while its growing transparency, interaction and willingness to cooperate is a positive indicator for the development of Abu Dhabi’s economy.

“If we continue in this rhythm, we will see great growth in Abu Dhabi in general and particularly in the oil and gas sector. ADNOC is the economic driver for Abu Dhabi - if they move forward, we see everything move ahead in the industry. This will enhance the industry and encourage entrepreneurs to invest in order to enrich the private sector and this is what we need for increasing recruitment of young Emiratis,” he said.

ARDECO’s Chairman believes that despite the oil industry having suffered through a sharp drop in oil prices between June 2014 and Feb 2016 that wiped out half the value, the government has a clear plan for the economy and it is placing the private sector at the forefront of being a driver for growth. “Sometimes you need to slowdown, reorganise and think about how you will relaunch in an industry that has seen oil prices decrease by more than 50 per cent. But we have seen positive indicators. Abu Dhabi has a mind-set that the private sector should move the economy in Abu Dhabi forward,” he said.

“We look at the public sector to have a better and fruitful dialogue with private sector. Because both need to work together and be able to move the economy forward,” he said.

He stressed on the need of cooperation with the private sector to take risks and employee young Emirati nationals to move the economy forward.

Al Nowais said that he is looking forward to work on more ADNOC projects as they are tendered to enhance the economic growth of Abu Dhabi.

Manufacturing will be an important aspect of oil and gas industry’s growth, Al Nowais said, adding that if business plans are stable, then manufacturing industry will fuel the growth.

“Manufacturing should be the industry to feed the oil industry, petrochemical or any other area in Abu Dhabi. Concentrating in the industry with sustainable projects will definitely be important,” he said.

]]>
Adapting to the new worldwide energy landscape https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/adapting-to-the-new-worldwide-energy-landscape/ Alexander Medvedev, Deputy Chairman, Management Committee, Gazprom spoke to Pipeline Magazine’s Julian Walker about his company’s cooperation with Saudi Aramco, further global expansion plans and the future LNG market 2017-12-10 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/adapting-to-the-new-worldwide-energy-landscape/

Alexander Medvedev, Deputy Chairman, Management Committee, Gazprom spoke to Pipeline Magazine’s Julian Walker about his company’s cooperation with Saudi Aramco, further global expansion plans and the future LNG market

Can you share with us, in terms of your future Middle Eastern strategy, how important was your recent Memorandum of Understanding with Saudi Aramco? And are you looking to expand your Middle Eastern operations?

Middle East promises to become one of the main drivers of the global gas demand growth. Gazprom as a leader of the gas industry, of course, is interested in developing the business in this region. The Memorandum of Understanding that we have signed with Saudi Aramco is one of the important steps towards implementation of this strategy.

Is the MoU indicative of a wider move across the industry towards large firms forging partnerships?

Today’s market brings new challenges to the producers. New market environment requires new approaches. Cooperation of the industry leaders could bring new synergy to the projects boosting their further development. Gazprom is always open for partnership with other industry players. We believe that joint efforts can help us all create new opportunities for business success.

How is Gazprom adapting to the new energy landscape? And how are you looking to drive growth in the coming years?

Gazprom always tries to meet the needs of our customers adapting to the changing market conditions regarding existing contract terms, as well as in creating brand new models of cooperation. I think our recent business results, especially record gas sales in Europe, speak for themselves. We are looking to the future with optimism.

You have signed a contract with Ghana National Petroleum Company to supply gas. Which other countries will you be looking to as new markets?

Gazprom is closely monitoring the market development around the world. We consider markets of South-East Asia, Middle East and Latin America as the most promising for LNG supplies.

What is your strategy to compete with the potential over-supply of LNG in the coming years?

Many analysts already speak about the glut of LNG on the global market. But even in these conditions, our trading arm Gazprom Marketing & Trading signs new interesting contracts with promising consumers. That’s why I would avoid speaking of any critical impact of the current situation on our LNG trading activities. As far as the influence of LNG glut on Gazprom’s pipeline supplies to Europe is concerned, there is no such impact at all. Our export pipelines are fully loaded and European regasification terminals are used just for one third of their capacity. Speaking about Gazprom’s strategy, Gazprom does not intend to rush into any price wars. For Gazprom, the ultimate goal is to maximise revenues for our shareholders including Russian State.

]]>
The long-term strategic partner for Abu Dhabi https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/the-long-term-strategic-partner-for-abu-dhabi/ 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 2017-12-03 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/december/the-long-term-strategic-partner-for-abu-dhabi/

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.

]]>
Cheniere looks to Asia for growth https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/november/cheniere-looks-to-asia-for-growth/ Anatol Feygin, Executive vice president and chief commercial officer, Cheniere talks exclusively to Pipeline Magazine about the future of the LNG industry and why Asia will continue to be a key growth engine for the industry 2017-11-26 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/november/cheniere-looks-to-asia-for-growth/

Anatol Feygin, executive vice president and chief commercial officer, Cheniere talks exclusively to Pipeline Magazine about the future of the LNG industry and why Asia will continue to be a key growth engine for the industry

The global gas and LNG markets have been going through an enormous transformation. In 2016, Cheniere started long-term LNG exports from the lower 48 states, something that was unthinkable just 10 years ago, and completely changed market dynamics, trends and business deals.

The US has many LNG projects that aim to reach final investment decision (FID) and are trying to get underway by 2020. In your opinion, over the next 5 years how many projects do you see reaching FID and how do you see the global market evolving?

The US currently has 17 LNG export project proposals filed with FERC or MARAD, representing a total capacity of over 200 million tonnes per annum (mtpa).

This is equivalent to just over 75 percent of the total LNG trade in 2016. So it is clear that not all of these projects will progress. We believe that the advantage lies with the expansion projects, with existing tanksand marine infrastructure providing a cost advantage over green-field developments.

Also the existing projects already have a trade relationship with the buyers and in our case we have already proven ourselves in terms of project delivery and ongoing operation at our Sabine Pass LNG project. This is both in terms of the LNG plant being built on-time and on budget and in terms of sourcing the gas supply for the plant. So we would contend that few of the new US projects are likely to reach FID over the next 5 years, but obviously the market will decide.

We see the global market evolving rapidly at present and that speed of change only looks set to increase as US volumes ramp-up over the next few years. The destination-free LNG volumes from the US will drive an increase in liquidity in the LNG trade that will help it become more resilient to market shocks and more responsive to buyers’ needs. However, I also think we are still quite a way from being a fully commoditised product, like crude oil for example.

When will the second wave of LNG reach the market? And how much more competitive can the sector be?

There has been a well reported slowdown in contracting from buyers in the last couple of years as they ‘digest’ the large amount of volume coming to market at present. However, market balances suggest new volumes will be required to meet ongoing demand growth early next decade. Buyers with a need for new volumes will need to take account of the four to five year lead time to commercialise and construct new LNG export capacity when they time their new commitments. This means that we should start to see some new commitments in the next year or two.

We believe the US, and Cheniere in particular with already permitted expansion capacity, can be very competitive in terms of both cost and speed to market. But that doesn’t mean that we, the suppliers, shouldn’t continue to make every effort to become even more competitive, so that we can firmly underpin our message to buyers and policy makers that gas is available, affordable and secure. This is something Cheniere continues to do as we review the potential of mid-scale trains for our current two sites.

The US and China have strengthened their relations and Cheniere recently opened an office in China. How much more demand do you see coming from China in the next 3-5 years? And do you believe we will see an increase in LNG imports from Asia?

We were very pleased to announce that Cheniere opened an office in Beijing in July.

Chinese LNG demand has grown rapidly over the past decade and this looks to be a very prospective market in terms of future growth. From first imports in 2006 it looks set to become the second largest LNG importer after Japan in the next year or two. It has been growing at around 2.5 mtpa on average over the past decade. We see that growth rate increasing, possibly more than doubling, over the next 3 to 5 years and probably well beyond that as China’s economy continues to grow, as it continues to urbanise and as it aims to improve urban air quality and control carbon emissions.

Asia currently accounts for just over 70 percent of all LNG imports. We believe it will continue to maintain this majority share as the overall industry grows. So Asia is not only set to continue to increase, but will continue to be a key growth engine for the industry.

]]>
Samsung Engineering looking to strengthen partnerships https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/november/samsung-engineering-looking-to-strengthen-partnerships/ Choong Heum Park President & CEO speaks exclusively to Pipeline Magazine about its focus at ADIPEC and why it is such an important show for the South Korean conglomerate 2017-11-26 https://www.pipelineme.com/interviewsfeatures/interviews/2017/november/samsung-engineering-looking-to-strengthen-partnerships/

 

Tell us about your stand?

Our stand represents the connection between Samsung Engineering services and contributions on the business side with ambition to bring a brighter and better future for clients, society and environment in our operating regions. We want to give emphasis on the importance which corporate social responsibly plays in our world. Therefore, we presented our business portfolio integrated with our efforts to bring a better future to society. At our stand, you can give back and bring knowledge to the children by donating books in your name. I would be honoured if the visitors gain interest in our efforts both on social and business side. With Samsung Engineering UAE

(SEUAE) as a major MENA hub, SEUAE plays a crucial strategic role in overseeing projects spanning North Africa to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

Therefore, we are looking to enhance our competitive edge by maximising the interactions between our global operation centres. Each centre has a distinctive role and a responsibility to increase the efficiency of project executions. In this respect, SEUAE plays a vital role as a middle office, managing risks, controlling profits and responsible for business developments.

Furthermore, Samsung Engineering is focused on our clients’ expectations and requirements, and we pride ourselves on building solutions in direct response to their needs. This is what makes us different, and what gives us a competitive edge. For instance, Abu Dhabi has set ambitious targets for its sour gas reserves. We can make a particular contribution given our expertise in sour gas processing. We always put our utmost efforts to introduce innovate techniques in our projects.

Orbital Automatic Welding machines for example have been applied to designated sites. These machines improve the production efficiency of pipeline larger than 30” and further reduce the risks of accident at site, through the automation process. We have already proven our capabilities with a number of flagship gas handling projects in the Middle East, such as the Shah Gas Development Package, a new, largescale green field gas project in Abu Dhabi for Al Hosn Gas, as well as the CO2 Capture & Injection Project and the Shaybah CPF Expansion GOSP Project for Saudi Aramco.

Our success in gas plant projects can be attributed to our process design and our analysis technology, which reduce the costs with high fidelity predictive modelling. Samsung Engineering also has special internal expertise allowing us to reduce replenishment costs and minimise energy use in gas processing.

 

 

 

 

 

Choong Heum Park President & CEO speaks exclusively to Pipeline Magazine about its focus at ADIPEC and why it is such an important show for the South Korean conglomerate

 

What are your aims at this year’s ADIPEC?

Samsung Engineering is pledged to bring growth to its partners with perpetual support, especially valuing and heavily supporting clients by participating in events such as ADIPEC. It is irrefutable that

ADIPEC is a great platform for knowledge sharing, innovation and showcasing our company’s capabilities across the globe. With growth and co-prosperity always a major goal to provide for our clients, we further want to show at this year’s ADIPEC that we are one of the leading and entrusted global EPC & PM companies operating in the Middle East on the one hand, but additionally bring sustainable development for the UAE and the Middle East region overall through several CSR programs on the other hand, which we have initiated and executed for our clients over the years. We have been an essential exhibitor at ADIPEC for several years and have been sponsoring this great event a couple of times, this year as a “Silver Sponsor”. Samsung Engineering is an ADIPEC veteran and belongs to this event and will stay actively involved as much as possible in every way.

 

Where are your key markets?

As mentioned before Samsung Engineering provides a wide range of services from EPC turnkey projects to FEED developments in this reason for major clients such as ADNOC.

The Middle East represents a large number of our projects globally. Samsung Engineering has tried to strengthen its relationship with existing customers there in order to win repeated business. Our major core market has been traditionally GCC counties such as UAE, Saudi Arabia, and extended to Kuwait and Oman. This is still very much the case with the vast majority of the firm’s backlog being in these two countries. The expansion of the Ruwais refinery is at the heart of Abu Dhabi’s plan to diversify its economy away from upstream extraction. Regarding FEED projects, we conducted the FEED development for the Borouge 4 project (a joint venture between ADNOC and the Austrian Borealis) based on the successful Borouge 3 expansion project, the largest integrated polyolefin site in the world, for which Samsung Engineering acted as an EPC contractor.

]]>