O&G services players seek clarity on energy future


PLAYERS in the oil and gas (O&G) services sector are still figuring out the direction of the country’s energy transition plan, which could guide the industry towards a more synergistic process in charting the course for a zero-carbon future in tandem with the global trend.

Malaysian Oil and Gas Services Council (MOGSC) president Sharifah Zaida Nurlisha Syed Ibrahim said more clarity on the issue could be furnished by major players in the field, along with other relevant stakeholders.

She said local O&G services companies are committed to finding and delivering the best solutions for the industry according to the country’s aspiration of future energy production and consumption.

“We are ready, but we need to know what Malaysia is doing, not what the world is doing. We are business entities.

“We will move with the change, but what is the change? That is always the major question,” Sharifah Zaida said in an executive panel session at the inaugural virtual Re-Imagining Malaysia Assets (Reset) 2021 Conference yesterday.

She said parties that are responsible to chart the country’s energy future should be more upfront about the direction to gain support from the industry players.

She added that local O&G services companies are global players and MOGSC can facilitate business-to-business networking and partnership, to look out for the best available technologies and research around the world.

“Be upfront, so that we can walk together because in order for you to make that change, you need the industry for support. If you do not share upfront, the moment you want to move, you can say nobody is supporting you and Malaysia does not have the capability.

“But that is not the case. We are a mature market. The service providers have been here for a long time,” she said.

ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Malaysia Inc president Edward Graham said O&G companies always need to find ways to be cost-competitive as the energy industry is transitioning to renewables and low carbon solutions.

He said the world’s population continues to grow from seven billion to nine billion people by 2040 and this would result in an expected increase in total energy consumption by 25%, and renewables will be a critical part of the energy mix that need to grow exponentially.

Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) executive VP and CEO of upstream Adif Zulkifli said in a keynote address that O&G will continue to make up a significant portion of the energy mix although on a declining trend from about 54% in 2018 to around 47% by 2040 on the growth of renewables.

He said the industry saw the accelerated pace of energy transition, with an increased focus on clean and sustainable sources of energy on the back of increased concerns on climate change and intensified efforts by governments and institutions to address the matter.

He said Petronas has started to reimagine a future where operations can be done remotely, while exploring ways to reduce costs with the use of innovation such as the subsea factory concept.

“Technology and digitalisation which for so long have been advocated as agents of change for the future must be embraced and implemented now.

“They represent the best chance for us the O&G industry to survive and remain relevant and competitive,” Adif said.

He said the adoption of software-as-a-service and infrastructure-as-a-service solutions have improved the efficiency of our field development plan studies up to 30%.

Petronas is also implementing projects for zero continuous venting and flaring of hydrocarbons at its upstream assets, with an estimated total projected greenhouse gas reduction of approximately two million tCO2e/year (tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent per year) and total gas recovery projection of about 33 MMscfd (million standard cu ft per day).

He said the upstream sector saw significant cuts in capital expenditure with spending below approximately US$400 billion (RM1.6 trillion) last year, less than half the peak in 2014, with companies having to make important decisions to remain resilient by keeping costs low and margins intact.

Malaysia is expected to launch the National Energy Policy (NEP) in the second half of 2021 (2H21), with the transition to a low carbon future in mind.

Reset 2021 is hosted by Petronas and organised by the Society of Petroleum Engineers Kuala Lumpur, in collaboration with MOGSC and Informa Markets.

The four-day event provides insights into the major trends that will drive change and transformation within the O&G industry, setting a new dimension for the advanced technology effort.

Read our previous report here

Oil and gas to remain a significant portion of energy mix, says Petronas