Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Aramco: Oil and Gas Remain Main Energy Source for Next 5 Years | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Dammam- Saudi Aramco chief executive Amin Nasser said that oil and gas will remain the main sources of energy during the next five years. He suggested a four-strategy plan to renew production and exploration sectors.

Speaking at the Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (ATCE) of the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) Nasser said: “oil and gas resources we have available, as well as new discoveries, are more challenging and more expensive to develop. At the same time, the present oil and gas fields are becoming increasingly mature and complex to operate.”

Taking place at the Dubai World Trade Centre, the three-day conference was launched on Monday with the participation of 8,000 oil and gas professionals.

Nasser said: “An integrated, four-point framework that can stand up to the energy transitions; policy, environmental, and regulatory trends; rising complexity of operations; and other variables at play.”

The strategy includes: resilience, research and high-end technology, top-notch talent, and collaboration.

The first point in the new business model is resilience. Nasser admitted that an unprecedented pressure is facing the industry in this persistent low oil-price, volatile environment – especially in terms of finances, cost and technology.

He explained that companies with weak finances are facing serious difficulties; meanwhile strong financial capacity to pass through difficult patches is important to future resilience.

While companies with strong downstream businesses perform better financially, Nasser believes in integration which could contribute to resilience.

“Continued investments in technology that boost efficiency and reduce costs, while improving reliable access to affordable, sustainable energy, are also critical to future success,” said Nasser.

The second point is research and high-end technology where Nasser said that innovation can’t be stopped but should be moved forward and expanded.

“Saudi Aramco is doing just that as part of our strategic intent to become a global, integrated energy and chemicals company,” he stated.

As for the final two points, top-notch talent and collaboration, Nasser said that investing in technology and research to overcome big challenges requires investments in people who will develop and use these tools.

He added that lack of interest in recruitment, development and retention of top talent will only “come back to haunt us.”

According to the chief executive, due to technology, “deep functional expertise of the past has given way to multi-disciplinary skills for cross-functional challenges.”

As oil companies, service providers, technology developers, higher education and others come together in strategic cooperation, it’s clear: resilience, technology and talent integrate and overlap.

Nasser concluded that research, technology, talent and cooperation that multiply strengths and resources toward mutual goals help face the challenges ahead.

The Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) is a non-profit professional organization whose mission is to collect, disseminate, and exchange technical knowledge concerning the exploration, development and production of oil and gas resources and related technologies for the public benefit. It provides services for over 168,000 members of 144 countries all over the world.