KBR, Inc. said that is joint venture with SOCAR was awarded a front-end engineering design contract for the topside of Azerbaijan’s Absheron project.
The platform will be located at SOCAR's Oil Rocks facility and will deliver gas and condensate into the SOCAR network, KBR said in a statement.
This award marks the third award to the SOCAR--KBR Limited Liability Company (SKLLC) joint venture since its inception in mid-2015. SKLLC was formed to help further Azerbaijan's ambition for creating an in-country based engineering company.
SOCAR and Total signed a framework agreement in late 2016 on the main contractual and commercial principles regulating the program for the first phase of development of the Absheron field.
At the first stage, the field development includes drilling one well at a depth of 450 meters. The extraction will amount to 1.5 billion cubic meters of gas a year, which will fully flow to the domestic market of Azerbaijan, as well as significant amounts of condensate. First gas could be produced in 2019.
SKLLC, a local Azerbaijani company, is built on the combined 110 years of experience between KBR and SOCAR. The joint venture partners KBR's experience in the Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey region and its proven tools, systems and procedures with SOCAR's operational knowledge and experience in the oil and gas sector. KBR has been working in Azerbaijan for over 24 years, with experience and knowledge of local onshore and offshore greenfield and brownfield assets.
"We are proud to bring the unmatched experience, vision, and leadership of SKLLC to this strategic project," said Jay Ibrahim, KBR's president for Europe, Middle East and Africa. "Azerbaijan is an important market for KBR and our strong Azerbaijani and international team members are dedicated to success for the region."
"Our local engineering capability is growing day by day and currently more than 75 per cent of our team is local Azerbaijani staff," Ibrahim continued. "We are happy to see positive impacts of this growth on the local engineering market and oil and gas industry and I am confident that SKLLC will be a home for Azerbaijan engineers where they can enjoy working for various projects and deliver many more successful projects for clients in the region," Ibrahim said.
The value of the contract will be booked into the backlog of unfilled orders for KBR's Engineering & Construction business segment in the fourth quarter of 2017.
Eight major global oil majors including BP, Eni, ExxonMobil, Repsol, Shell, Statoil, Total and Wintershall have all agreed to further reduce methane emissions.
The eight energy companies signed a Guiding Principles document, which focuses on: continually reducing methane emissions; advancing strong performance across gas value chains; improving accuracy of methane emissions data; advocating sound policies and regulations on methane emissions; and increasing transparency.
The energy companies also agreed to encourage others across the natural gas value chain – from production to the final consumer – to do the same. The commitment was made as part of wider efforts by the global energy industry to ensure that natural gas continues to play a critical role in helping meet future energy demand while addressing climate change.
In a joint statement from the oil majors they stated that since natural gas consists mainly of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, its role in the transition to a low-carbon future will be influenced by the extent to which methane emissions are reduced.
“Numerous studies have shown the importance of quickly reducing methane emissions if we’re to meet growing energy demand and multiple environmental goals,” said Mark Radka, Head of UN Environment’s Energy and Climate Branch. “The Guiding Principles provide an excellent framework for doing so across the entire natural gas value chain, particularly if they’re linked to reporting on the emissions reductions achieved.”
The Guiding Principles were developed in collaboration with the Environmental Defense Fund, the International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Gas Union, the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative Climate Investments, the Rocky Mountain Institute, the Sustainable Gas Institute, The Energy and Resources Institute, and United Nations Environment.
“Our analysis at IEA shows that credible action to minimise methane emissions is essential to the achievement of global climate goals, and to the outlook for natural gas,” said Tim Gould, Head of Supply Division, World Energy Outlook, IEA.
“The commitment by companies to the Guiding Principles is a very important step; we look forward to seeing the results of their implementation and wider application. The opportunity is considerable – implementing all of the cost-effective methane abatement measures worldwide would have the same effect on long-term climate change as closing all existing coal-fired power plants in China.”
Honeywell has launched a new connected gas detector in the Middle East designed to keep industrial operations safe while making set-up, maintenance and compliance reporting faster and easier by leveraging Bluetooth connectivity.
The new Sensepoint XRL fixed gas detector monitors industrial operations for specific hazardous gases, such as carbon monoxide or methane. Unlike other fixed gas detectors, Sensepoint XRL is Bluetooth-enabled, meaning it can be set up and maintained remotely using a smartphone app.
“Setting up, maintaining and generating reports from a fixed gas detector has usually been a time-consuming effort for industrial workers across the region. Previously, their work involved using ladders or lifts, multiple personnel and even temporary equipment or production shutdowns,” said Edmond Mikhael, general manager, Honeywell Safety and Productivity Solutions (SPS) in the Middle East, Turkey and Africa (META).
“Honeywell’s Sensepoint XRL leverages new Bluetooth connectivity, so a single worker can quickly carry out a range of tasks – from set-up and maintenance to reporting – in hazardous areas from the safety of ground level.”
When paired with an intrinsically safe smartphone available from Honeywell, a single worker can perform many standard maintenance tasks, including set-up, commissioning, and calibration wirelessly from up to 33 feet away. Sensepoint XRL and the app can also quickly produce system reports necessary for safety and environmental regulatory compliance.
Sensepoint XRL is certified for explosive area applications, and is suitable for downstream oil and gas operations and applications ranging from laboratories to boiler rooms, and from fuel stations to warehouses.
The detector monitors for hazardous levels of one targeted gas from among 23 toxic and combustible gases, including methane, carbon monoxide and hydrogen sulfide. The detector is IP 66-rated and uses a metal enclosure to stand up to rugged use, including hosedowns.
Oil and gas professionals can now measure force, load and distance with Straightpoint (SP) products, as the UK-based manufacturer Straightpoint (SP) launches the Wireless Linear Displacement Transducer (WLDT) in the market.
SP already has a comprehensive range of force measurement and load cell products, which is now complemented by a new tool, available in stroke lengths from 25mm to 200mm that can accurately measure displacement or movement in a variety of applications presented by the construction, civil engineering, aerospace and other sectors.
David Ayling, director at SP, said: “Like many products in our range, the WLDT hits the market in response to demand. There are many instances where an end user is measuring force or load and has a desire to measure distance as well. They might want to know how high something has been jacked up or to what extent a building has shifted, for example.”
The WLDT is a robust, absolutely linear position / displacement transducer and is inherently frictionless, presenting a mean time between failures (MTBF) in excess of 100 million cycles when properly used. An eye at each end of the transducer enables the sensor to be quickly and accurately positioned in place and connected to SP’s Multiple Wireless Load Cell Controller (SW-MWLC) software package. It is also supplied with SP’s SA700C wireless transmitter.
Ayling highlighted two product features, beyond its appeal as a wireless versus cabled solution: first, its plug-and-play capability; and, second, its compatibility with SP’s renowned software, suiting it to civil engineers; positional control applications; research and development testing; lifting or spreader beam testing; aerospace system integration; and hydraulic or jacking work.
He said: “There are other options for professionals looking to apply distance measurement technology, but most will require sourcing of a separate transmitter, calibration and other labour just to set them up. Like previous SP products, the WLDT is ready to go. Further, consider the extent of the data that can be captured and logged; users can chart load versus displacement and present information in graphs and other infographics.”
As industry has already noted, SP’s software package is a versatile, user friendly, wireless load cell control, display and data-logging tool designed for use on the Windows PC platforms, Vista, Win 7, 8 and 10. It allows simultaneous, wireless communication between SP products and a Windows PC. A resizable window displays a table of up to 100 wireless load cell channels of live data.
EPC contractor NPCC, part of Senaat Abu Dhabi, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Egypt’s Petrojet to work together on identifying and executing new projects in Egypt and the wider region.
The MoU was signed by Mr Aqeel A. Madhi, MD & CEO of NPCC and Mr Salah Ismail, Chairman and MD of Petrojet, in presence of senior members of the management team, at ADIPEC in Abu Dhabi. MoU will come into effect immediately and both parties plan to enhance cooperation to win and execute new projects.
“This partnership, with an established organisation in Egypt, is a golden opportunity for NPCC to win and execute projects in Egypt and near-by markets,” said Aqeel A. Madhi, managing director and CEO of NPCC. “It will help us grow in new markets, Egypt in specific and other markets in general. This strategic partnership and cooperation will also support our strategy of growing in new markets.
Salah Ismail, chairman and managing director of Petrojet said “I can assure you that both companies are going to work and look for opportunities to partner and execute projects together. Petrojet has been operating in Oil Sector since 1975, and is looking for opportunities in UAE and Gulf Markets. Strategic partnership with company like NPCC will help us with projects and this partnership will lead to new opportunities.”
NPCC was founded in 1973 in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and has delivered offshore and onshore oil and gas EPC projects for national and international oil companies in the region. It has over 1200 engineers in four engineering centres across Europe and Asia, a fleet of 22 offshore construction vessels and a yard of 1.3 million square meters in MENA region.
Gulf Stevedoring (GSCCO), part of the Gulftainer group of companies, said it appointed Richard James as its new managing director.
In his new capacity, James will be responsible for improving existing operations and providing strategic direction to enhance the performance of Gulf Stevedoring’s operations, which include the Northern Container Terminal (NCT) in Jeddah, the Jubail Industrial Port (King Fahad Industrial Port) and the Jubail Container Terminal (JCT), the company said.
Gulftainer is a privately owned, independent port operator based in the UAE. NCT is a container handling terminal and trans-shipment hub within the Red Sea region and currently handles over 35 million tonnes of cargo annually, which is expected to grow substantially in the future, the company said, adding that the JCT is strategically located near prominent industrial areas, which makes it an ideal hub for Saudi imports and exports, especially industrial equipment.
The company said James has over 15 years of international work exposure to projects in UK, UAE, Lebanon, Iraq, Russia, India and East Africa.
Beginning his career in the Middle East with Gulftainer in 2011, James worked in various roles including the business development department and as terminal manager at the Sharjah Container Terminal (SCT).
Prior to his permanent appointment with Gulf Stevedoring, James briefly served as the Interim managing director. Under his leadership, the company achieved several significant milestones including the retaking of the largest market share in Jeddah Islamic Port (JIP), the introduction of new services at Jubail and third place in CMA CGM’s global productivity ratings for Northern Container Terminal.
Gulf Stevedoring anticipates the impact of James’ appointment to continue following these recent successes. Prior to joining Gulftainer, James worked with Forth Ports in Scotland and spent eight years in the British Royal Navy.
MacGregor, part of Cargotec, has been awarded a contract by Developer Summit for the project management, engineering and supply of a complete subsea mooring and riser system for the Bangladesh's second FSRU.
The MacGregor delivery will be completed in the fourth quarter 2018.
The equipment for the FSRU includes Flintstone mooring connectors, as well as project management for the fabrication, procurement and project management of the complete subsea mooring and riser system. The FSRU will be ready for operation on the site during the first quarter of 2019.
The deal is part of a project to support Summit LNG Terminal's development of Bangladesh's power-supply infrastructure
"We are convinced about MacGregor's ability to successfully carry out this demanding project with its experience in providing innovative subsea mooring and riser system solutions as well as managing demanding projects," said ANM Tariqur Rashid, Managing Director of Summit LNG Terminal.
"This order demonstrates our customer's trust in us to help it secure an improved power-supply infrastructure for Bangladesh. This second order in such a short time supports our strategic goal to expand our presence in the FSRU market with the combined strength of MacGregor and Flintstone," said Michel van Roozendaal, president, MacGregor.
Trelleborg Sealing Solutions launches a unique rotary seal which runs at greater speeds and higher temperatures.
The innovative Turcon Roto Glyd Ring V is a double-acting rotary seal, which is primarily intended for double-acting pressure applications within severe working conditions that require extended rotary service. The seal, specifically engineered for machinery where a high Pressure-Velocity (PV) value is required, allows equipment to run at the highest possible speeds in extreme pressures allowing for an extended service life.
Henrik Vollmond, Product manager for the seal, said: “Customers are demanding increased performance from rotary seals that challenge the PV values of current seals. We therefore needed to develop a rotary seal that can run at higher speeds combined with higher pressures.
“This resulted in the development of the unique Turcon Roto Glyd Ring V, which not only achieves these requirements but also, by virtue of lower heat generation, offers a significantly extended seal life. For the equipment operator that means lower overall costs due to reduced maintenance requirements and energy consumption.”
Rigorous tests have been carried out on the pioneering product and show that it runs with low frictional torque at all pressures from 0.5 MPa and above with low sensitivity to pressure increases from 0.5 to 20 MPa. It achieved a PV twice as high as other bidirectional seals and demonstrated 50 per cent lower friction. Furthermore, wear of the seal and O-Ring was so small that it could not be measured.
Uniquely, the Turcon Roto Glyd Ring V has a built-in valve function. Valve ports connect both sides of the Turcon ring profile to the space in the centre, which is the lubricating groove. An elastomer ring is installed in the lubricating groove to prevent static leakage through the ports.
When Turcon Roto Glyd Ring V is pressurised from one or the other side, the elastomer ring opens the port on the pressure side and equalizes the pressure beneath the elastomer ring – pressure balancing the seal by more than half. Shifting pressurisation through the ports also renews the fluid in the space between the “legs”, improving lubrication under the seal.
The innovative sealing solution is ideal for use within equipment when a long service life is required within demanding service conditions. Typical examples are within rotary connections with full rotation or swivel movements, such as hydraulic swivels, lead-throughs and hydraulic rotators.
UK's oil giant BP has agreed to sell a package of its interests in the Bruce field in the North Sea to Serica Energy in a deal worth about £300 million.
The Bruce field was discovered in 1974 and came into production in 1993, with Keith tied back to Bruce in 2000. Rhum, a high-pressure, high-temperature satellite field located 40 kilometres to the north of Bruce, was brought into production in 2005.
BP will sell assets that comprise the Bruce, Keith and Rhum fields, three bridge-linked platforms and associated subsea infrastructure. BP expects to receive payments of around £300 million from Serica, with most set to be received over the next four years.
Bernard Looney of BP said: "This is an example of BP's upstream strategy in action - refreshing our portfolio and focusing our activity on assets which will add most value over the long-term.
"We remain committed to the North Sea and continue to invest. We expect our production there to double to around 200,000 barrels equivalent a day by 2020 through new projects like Quad 204 and Clair Ridge.
The sale and transfer of operatorship should happen by the 3rd quarter of 2018. The Bruce assets are expected to transition to Serica as a fully operational entity with around 110 staff.
Serica chairman Tony Craven Walker commented: “This transaction will establish Serica as a leading British independent oil company with the scale, balance sheet and operating capability to prosper in the North Sea’s rapidly changing upstream oil and gas industry.”
McDermott International, Inc. said it won a major contract valued between US$750 million and $1.5 billion from Saudi Aramco for engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) services in the Safaniya onshore and offshore field.
The contract, awarded under the existing long-term agreement with Saudi Aramco, includes the full EPCI services such as design, fabrication, installation and pre-commissioning of 9 slipover jackets, 10 production deck modules, an electrical distribution platform and associated cables and pipelines, McDermott said in a statement.
The combined weight of the structures will exceed 22,000 short tons (20,000 metric tons), with the pipelines totaling over 16 miles (26 kilometers) and the cables totaling around 13 miles (22 kilometers).
“McDermott continues to receive contracts under the long-term agreement for Saudi Aramco’s most considerable projects. This award is a continuation of our long-standing relationship and successful track record with Saudi Aramco,” said Linh Austin, McDermott vice president, Middle East and Caspian.
“We plan to execute much of the project from our Al Khobar office and Dammam fabrication facility, increasing our local content in country, in support of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and Aramco’s In-Kingdom Total Value Add (IKTVA) program.”
Located approximately 125 miles (201 kilometers) north of Dhahran in the Arabian Gulf, the Safaniya oil field is currently the largest offshore oil field in the world, by production. This brownfield project is the next phase of a wider campaign to replace aging facilities with electrified platforms to maintain and enhance the field’s production.
McDermott said the work on the contract is expected to begin immediately and will be reflected in the company’s fourth quarter 2017 backlog.
McDermott plans to use its engineering and procurement teams in Dubai, Chennai and Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia. Construction is expected to take place at McDermott’s facilities in Dammam, Saudi Arabia and Jebel Ali, Dubai. Vessels from McDermott’s global fleet are scheduled to perform the installation work.
Aker BP has entered into two separate alliance agreements, one with Maersk Drilling and Halliburton for Jack-Ups, and one with Odfjell Drilling and Halliburton for semi-submersible.
The framework agreements are for five years with the option to extend for a further five years. The main objective of both partnerships is to increase productivity and efficiency of the drilling process.
The intent is that the Drilling & Wells alliances will plan and execute sanctioned production and exploration drilling activities by using an integrated well delivery model; a “Drilling & Well Alliance”.
Halliburton will provide Aker BP’s well construction activities performed from either a Jack-Up (Maersk) or Semi-submersible (Odfjell) drilling unit, provided the model is approved in the respective licenses.
“The Drilling & Wells alliances will further strengthen our One Team approach and enhance integration and productivity along the value chain. Strategic alliances with our suppliers in addition to the digitalisation strategy are key enablers to our improvement agenda,” said Tommy Sigmundstad, SVP Drilling & Wells in Aker BP.
Both alliances are formed under the “one for all, all for one” collaboration model where the partners align around common goals to drive continuous improvement and create greater value for all. Aker BP said in a statement that it is committed to increase the productivity, quality, flow- and time efficiency throughout the value chain. Strategic alliance relationships are an integral part of this strategy.
“With this alliance and the unique integrated well delivery model, we are leveraging our collective experience and capabilities to reduce waste across the value chain. Maersk Drilling is looking forward to utilising our high performance jack-ups as a platform to implement digital solutions to improve drilling efficiency and lower total well cost for Aker BP,“ added Jørn Madsen, CEO of Maersk Drilling.
“We look forward to working with Aker BP and to applying our digital approach to this alliance. Our Digital Well Program™ built on an open community will enable Aker BP and other service providers to better collaborate and align around the oil and gas digital twin for lean process execution and optimal drilling decisions,” said Nagaraj Srinivasan, Senior Vice President, Landmark and Halliburton Digital Solutions.”
UK’s Wood signs a deal to become the operating partner of the Scottish Area Gas Evacuation (SAGE) system and Beryl pipeline, taking over from Apache's interests in North Sea.
The contract follows Ancala Midstream's acquisition of Apache North Sea's interest in the assets.
Wood will manage the day-to-day operation of the SAGE system, which transports gas through the 323 km SAGE pipeline between the northern part of the Central North Sea to the SAGE terminal at St Fergus, north of Aberdeen, where it is processed on behalf of North Sea gas producers.
Robin Watson, Wood's chief executive said: "We are delighted to be working with Ancala Midstream on these major pieces of infrastructure. This contract strengthens our operating partner portfolio in the UKCS and our commitment is to leverage our broad capabilities, differentiated expertise and innovative solutions to deliver safely and efficiently."
Wood is also operating partner for the Central Area Transmission System (also known as CATS) under an up to 10 year, US$250 million contract, awarded in 2015 by CATS Management Limited; a wholly owned subsidiary of Antin Infrastructure Partners.
SDX Energy Inc., the North Africa focused oil and gas company, said one of its Sebou permit wells in Morocco, part of a nine-well drilling programme, is producing higher than anticipated gas levels during the testing phase.
The KSR-14 well on the Sebou permit in Morocco was tested and recorded an average flow rate conventional natural gas into the sales line of 6.4MMscfd, SDX Energy said in a statement.
The well, in which the company holds a 75 per cent working interest, will remain on production for an extended period prior to being shut in for a pressure build-up as part of the year-end reserve estimate process.
"This is further positive newsflow from our active Moroccan drilling campaign,” said Paul Welch, President and CEO of SDX. “In particular, the KSR-14 test results are ahead of our internal expectations, especially in light of the fact that we are only flowing from the Hoot sand, as opposed to both the Hoot and Guebbas. Despite this, the well still managed to produce at a rate that would allow it to meet our entire daily sales commitment by itself.”
Welch said the results increase the company’s confidence in reliably increasing production rates to meet additional customer demands based upon the results of the current program and target an increase in sales volumes by 50 per cent in 2018.
Meanwhile, at its KSR-15 development well, also on the Sebou permit in Morocco with a 75 per cent working interest, the completion equipment has been run and connection to the nearby infrastructure is now underway, SDX Energy said. Completion of the well is expected to occur within three weeks of rig departure with flow testing targeted for early December 2017. The rig move to the next location, KSR-16, has begun.
The KSR-14 and KSR-15 are the first two wells of a nine well drilling programme on the company's Sebou, Gharb Centre and Lalla Mimouna permits in Morocco.
On the Gharb Centre exploration permit, the seismic tender for 240km2 of new 3D seismic has been completed and the contract awarded to CGG. The seismic acquisition is expected to start at the end of second quarter 2018, it said.
"Overall, we are moving forward with the campaign apace and are pleased with the progress to date. We look forward to providing further updates in due course,” Welch added.
Petrocas Energy, a Rosneft subsidiary, has signed an agreement with Motor Oil Hellas (MOH) Corinth Refineries for the supply of crude and other feedstock to Greek refineries.
The deal looks at the supply of mutual supply of feedstock and oil products during the next five years and implies the potential of increasing the volumes to 7.5 mtpa.
The agreement was signed within the framework of development of the partnership relations between Petrocas Energy and Motor Oil Hellas. In 2017 the supply and procurement of oil products amounted to over 2 mmt. Oil products were supplied to Motor Oil Hellas mainly using resources of Rosneft.
The signed agreement brings the cooperation with Greek partners to a new level and sets a foundation for stable and long-term relations in the field of supply of crude and other feedstock for Greek refineries. The document will also enable Rosneft to independently sell oil products produced at the refineries of Motor Oil Hellas for trading using facilities of Petrocas Energy.
MOH owns one of the biggest refineries in Greece which has a refinery capacity of 13.5 mmt that accounts for 42 per cent of total annual processing of crude oil in Greece. The firm is also the largest exporter of oil products in Greece with the share of 75 per cent.
Trelleborg’s offshore operation has developed a new Rotating Buoyancy Module system for buckling mitigation for subsea pipelines. The advanced solution is engineered to roll on the seabed to reduce lateral friction and berm creation thereby creating repeatable and predictable pipeline behavior.
Steven Bray, Oil and Gas Business manager with Trelleborg’s offshore operation, said: “We have developed the rotating buoyancy module design to roll on the seabed to ensure predictable pipeline behavior. The modules practically eliminate rogue buckles and reduce axial walking in the pipeline. The new design reduces the quantity of modules needed to create safe buckling zones and this can lead to a significant reduction in overall project costs.”
When hot liquid flows through a pipeline, buckling typically occurs as thermal fluctuations cause the pipeline to expand and contract during start-up and shutdown sequences. This can possibly lead to problematic buckling along the length of the pipeline. While traditionally non-rotating cylindrical buoyancy modules are installed along these sections to reduce weight and friction as well as promote controlled bending, in certain conditions the modules displace seabed material. This displacement can lead to ridges or berms of earth, which start to restrict the lateral movement of the buoyancy modules.
Rotating Buoyancy Modules can be used on subsea pipelines or flowlines to reduce berm creation and create predictable, safe bucking zones. The modules practically eliminate rouge buckling and can reduce project costs for customers.
Norway's Statoil has extended Archer Limited's Platform Drilling Management contract by three years for the Peregrino Field Development located offshore Brazil.
The Peregrino heavy oilfield is located 85 km off the coast of Rio de Janeiro. It is the largest field operated by Statoil outside the Norwegian continental shelf.
The contract extension will begin on 1st December 2017. The drilling services are for Peregrino A and B platforms. The extension awarded is the second of the two options included in the original four year contract which commenced in 2009. The contract extension ensures Archer’s continued operations for Statoil in Brazil until November 30th, 2020.
“This 3 year contract extension illustrates the hard work and commitment from all our personnel over the last 8 years by consistently delivering exceptional operational performance and in continuing to maintain a safe place of work for all those engaged on the Statoil Peregrino operations,” said Kenny Dey, VP Platform Drilling.
Statoil is the operator with 60 per cent of the licence, with Sinochem, its partner, holding the remaining 40 per cent. Peregrino is the largest field operated by Statoil outside the Norwegian continental shelf.
Aquaterra Energy, a leading global offshore engineering solutions provider, said it appointed Nick Hawkes as its new financial director as the company gears up for service expansion.
Based at the company’s headquarters in Norwich, Hawkes will be responsible for providing effective financial leadership and support to the business, the company said in a statement.
Hawkes has more than four years’ experience in the oil and gas industry and joins Aquaterra having spent nearly 20 years with Babcock International Group where he latterly held the position as financial director for 15 years.
Hawkes graduated from Bournemouth University in 1987 with a BA (Hons) Business Studies.
His appointment follows the announcement in July that Aquaterra Energy was the first company to secure a multi-million pound investment from EV Private Equity as part of its pledge in 2016 to invest $200 million in North Sea businesses with new technologies and high growth potential. The independent private equity firm confirmed it was seeking to invest between $10 million to $40 million in each company.
George Morrison, managing director of Aquaterra Energy, said: “Nick’s appointment marks an important development as the company shapes itself for future growth. His experience will bring important skills to our top management team.”
Hawkes added: “I joined the company because I saw a real opportunity to lead and support the growth of the business through the delivery of effective financial leadership and governance. I have 15 years of experience and skill to bring to what is a dynamic and expanding international company.”
Hawkes joins newly appointed Chairman, Alan Wilson, along with non-executive directors Mark Boyd (co-founder) and Gavin Prise (former CEO of Expro), all of whom took up their posts following the EV investment deal.
Aquaterra, which has operations in Aberdeen, Norwich and Cairo, provides riser analysis, riser systems, offshore structures, repeatable products and it’s integrated WellStart specialism to the global oil and gas industry.
Britain and the UAE have a long and successful history in oil and gas and can look forward to a positive future, says UK ambassador to the Emirates, Philip Parham
How closely do the two countries’ oil and gas sectors work together?
The oil and gas sector in the UAE is now quite mature, and UK companies have been operating here since oil was first discovered in the 1930s. One of the original partners to the discovery was the forerunner of BP, and their tenure, 82 years later, has continued through their participation in the ADCO (now ADNOC Onshore) onshore concession - due to last a further 37 years. Partners in a maturing oil field will need to invest in the best new technologies and techniques in enhance oil recovery, an area in which the UK excels. It is our ambition to assist the UAE in maximising the recovery of incremental oil and to leverage our experience in exemplary HSE to help nurture and protect the natural environment of the Emirates.
What framework is in place for UK companies who want to expand into the UAE energy market?
Our Department for International Trade advises companies on international markets, introduces them to potential business partners and supports them with visit programmes, launch receptions, exhibition support and so on. We take a very much “whole of government” approach. Our embassy staff, across all our government departments represented in the UAE, are dedicated to working collectively to meet and exceed our global export target of £1 trillion a year by 2020.
We have a specific team in the embassy working for our Department for International Trade on oil and gas, nuclear, renewable and clean energy. They are on hand to provide advice to British companies operating in the market or wishing to enter it.
We also work with UAE-based importers, to find out what products and services they need to make their businesses more successful, with the aim to help them find UK partners and innovative, cost saving, effective, value-enhancing UK solutions. We have a free and anonymous online platform for sourcing from the UK called “Exporting is GREAT”.
We work to promote UK expertise through events in the UAE such as ADIPEC, the World Future Energy Summit, Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week and the IAEA Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Energy, which was held in Abu Dhabi for the first time last month.
What do you consider as the main energy opportunities available in the UAE to UK business?
Oil and gas is the foundation on which our energy trade is built. The UK will continue to be a dedicated long-term partner. The UAE’s enthusiastic adoption and development of clean energy, and its efforts to protect the natural environment, are very impressive. The UAE and UK can build real synergies in this area too. The UK of course enjoys rather less sunshine than the UAE, but we have researchers doing exciting things with nanoparticles and protective solar coatings.
We are developing commercial waste to energy technologies. And we have a strong record of advanced nuclear research, built on our experience of several decades of civil nuclear power in the UK. Masdar is already a leading partner in UK offshore wind installation with a current capacity of 5,355MW, bringing our total wind generation to 16,370MW - enough for nearly 11 million homes.
How important is ADIPEC to the UK’s energy industry?
ADIPEC is now widely acknowledged to be the largest oil and gas trade show in the world by most metrics, and is still growing year-on-year. Again this year, we have two pavilions for companies from the UK, each with around 60 companies - one managed by The Energy Industries Council (EIC) and one by Scottish Development International, who won Best International Pavilion at last year’s ADIPEC.
For the second year running, the Welsh Government will also be participating alongside the EIC. Some other British companies are here under their own auspices. In total around 200 British companies are participating – nearly 10 per cent of all the exhibitors. So, there’s no doubt how valuable ADIPEC is to the UK’s energy industry.
What can the UK’s businesses bring to the UAE’s oil and gas sector?
I have mentioned a number of areas where UK expertise, technology and manufacturing excellence already make major contributions to the UAE’s oil and gas sector. But a key focus is enhanced oil recovery techniques, to manage and optimise ageing fields as efficiently as possible. On the UK continental shelf, end-of-life field recovery is projected at an average of 46 per cent.
The adoption of suitable technology could result in up to six billion extra barrels being recovered from the North Sea, on top of the recoverable reserves of 20 billion barrels which are currently estimated to remain - which would mean the life of many North Sea fi elds being extended by an extra 10 years. This is the type of expertise which we can also bring to bear in the UAE with Emirati partners.
In the future, we are looking at spending AED 177 billion on decommissioning in the North Sea. This will stimulate corresponding supply chain development, which will be easily translatable to the Emirates when decommissioning is required here.
Eni said it signed an exploration and production sharing agreement that gives it operatorship for an offshore block in Oman with a unit of the country’s national oil company.
Oman Oil Company Exploration and Production (OOCEP), a subsidiary of state company Oman Oil Company SAOC (OOC), entered into an agreement of Block 52 with Eni Oman B.V, giving it 85 per cent interest, while holding 15 per cent itself, Eni said in a statement.
The block is an underexplored area with hydrocarbons potential located offshore in the southern region of Oman, and an area of approximately 90,000 Km2, with water depths ranging from 10 to over 3,000 meters.
The signing ceremony was attended by the Minister of Oil and Gas of Oman, Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhi, OOC CEO, Isam Al Zadjali, Eni’s CEO, Claudio Descalzi.
During the same event, held in Muscat, Eni assignment 30 per cent interest in the Block 52 to another Gulf NOC.
“The signing of the Block 52 EPSA represents an important milestone in Eni’s strategy to reinforce its presence in the Middle East region. We wish to establish with the Sultanate of Oman, which is a historical Oil & Gas producer in the region, a long-lasting relationship in the best tradition of Eni. It is also remarkable that, the same day, we are welcoming a partner in Block 52, to join our efforts with such a strong partner that is currently leading the LNG business worldwide,” said Descalzi.
Block 52 was awarded to Eni and OOCEP following an international bid round process launched in October 2016.
ADES International Holding Ltd., an oil and gas drilling and production services company said it was awarded a new contract for its ADMARINE III offshore jack-up rig by Egypt’s NOC General Petroleum Company (GPC).
ADES, which operates in the Middle East and Africa through its subsidiaries, said the contract entails an initial two-year engagement of ADMARINE III with an option to extend for a further two-years. No significant additional CAPEX is anticipated for the ongoing deployment of the rig.
Dr. Mohamed Farouk, Chief Executive Officer of ADES International Holding, said:
“Our commitment to providing tailored solutions and superior services to our clients has enabled ADES to maintain long-term relationships with high-profile local and international energy companies, ensuring the continuity of our business during challenging climates.”
“ADMARINE III’s original contract with GPC in 2012 marked ADES’ initial investment into the offshore drilling market and represented a key shift in the Company’s strategy to purchase rigs through distressed sales. By building on this model, we have grown our revenues at a CAGR of 63 per cent between 2012 and 2016 with the addition of eight further offshore rigs to our fleet. We are excited to renew our partnership with one of Egypt’s leading energy providers and ADES’s original clients.”