Bugan fast tracks to raise oil and gas output

abarrelfullabarrelfull wrote on 14 Dec 2012 14:36

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Saturday, April 18, 2009

Oil and gas production from the Bugan field is all set to gain a significant boost with the installation of an ultra-modern, entirely remotely- controlled platform expected to come on stream in the coming months.

Combining innovative approaches in engineering and project management, while utilizing entirely local contractor expertise, engineers at Brunei Shell Petroleum have succeeded in constructing the complex platform in a record 20 months and a full 12 months ahead of normal schedule, while adhering to the highest safety standards.

Work is now in full swing to transfer and install the platform, which is fitted with an imposing superstructure of a 40-metre- high jacket and 1400-tonne heavy topsides, in waters of up to 35 meters deep, some 20 kilometers offshore at the Bugan field.

Part of a cluster of major project investments currently being undertaken by BSP, production from the new platform will enhance oil and gas output at Bugan, which is a relatively new field discovered in 1993 and starting production only five years ago.

Holding potentially significant oil and especially gas reserves, development of the Bugan field will strengthen BSP’s hydrocarbon portfolio and contribute towards efforts to enhance Brunei’s long-term oil and gas production.

As part of a strategy within BSP to fast track construction time and drive greater efficiency, BSP’s engineers used a “carbon copy” of the award winning Champion West platform. This platform is remotely -operated and monitored, and boasts an intricate array of smart “snake” wells and is looked upon as one of the most technologically advanced offshore platforms in the world.

The Bugan project team used standardised equipment, but also sought for innovation and improvisation. An example is the helideck, which is made of aluminum that will require no major maintenance.

A conscious policy decision was also taken to use only Bruneian contractors, which has made the Bugan project unique. As Dr Grahaeme Henderson, Managing Director of BSP pointed out, “ We resolved to maximise the use of Bruneian contractors for all the work, right through the supply chain, whether it was design, fabrication, equipment supply or installation stage. The platform was fully assembled here at our marine construction yard in Kuala Belait. In this way, we created business opportunities for our Bruneian contractors and, at the same time, reduced the construction time. It is a truly made-in-Brunei engineering marvel in every sense of the word.”

BSP has a long-term commitment to help grow local business. Close to 90 percent of BSP’s business is conducted with Bruneian companies. The company has invested BND 1.4 billion in contract spend in 2008, with local small and medium enterprises being substantial beneficiaries of these contracts.

The Bugan project is just one example of the ongoing drive to enhance cost-competitiveness and inject greater efficiencies across the business. Dr Henderson added, “BSP initiated a business improvement programme about 3 years ago and well before the global economic slowdown began. This has proven to be an important strategic decision, allowing us to be in a strong position to respond to lower oil prices.”

The kind of progress at Bugan is being duplicated elsewhere in the company through various employee-led business improvement initiatives. “We will leverage on our strong business performance and leadership in technology, to reduce costs and deliver shareholder value,” said Dr Henderson.

BSP is the premier energy company in Brunei, contributing 95 percent of the Nation’s oil and gas production and also the leading employer in the private sector, with a 3000-strong workforce and another 7000 contractor staff supporting its onshore and offshore operations.

The company’s engineers have also quietly pioneered new technology development in smart fields and novel drilling techniques such as snake wells, dragon wells and fishhook wells in Brunei.

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