Article by Adam Becis, Principal Reservoir Engineer
With the never-ending expansion of the energy industry into more diverse and varied locations, more and more countries are faced with regulating the development of their natural resources. It could be argued that these countries include less-developed nations with small populations and short national histories; additionally they can be geographically isolated. The arrival of the energy industry can pose a question for a recently-formed National Oil Company (NOC) or Government Authority (GA): what technical resources can be utilized to not only regulate the entry of foreign companies, but also to ensure that the country benefits the most over the production life of its hydrocarbon assets?
It may be that there is no organic technical talent available in the local workforce. Rushing to implement an industry framework, the NOC or GA may choose the short term option of utilising the services of consultants or a consultancy to provide technical advice and support. This international consultancy experience may be vital to aid in creating industry rules and regulations, organising bid rounds, and approving initial exploration programs and developments. However, NOC or GA may be faced by the prospect that all the experience and expertise from the process will now be walking out the door, and without careful planning there may be no other option to repeat the process again. What can be done to break this cycle and develop indigenous talent with the requisite skills to fulfill technical requirements, and develop experience and information within the organisation?