The country’s oil and gas production level is at a low level, affecting the national income rate due to uncertain delay and long response time in handling recovery.
Legislative Council (LegCo) member Yang Berhormat Hajah Rosmawatty binti Haji Abdul Momin said this during the 19th session of the LegCo yesterday.
She added that Brunei Shell Petroleum Company Sdn Bhd (BSP) has spent a huge sum in rehabilitation projects over the past five to eight years but has yet to see results in terms of productions.
As such Yang Berhormat Hajah Rosmawatty provided several suggestions, including calling on the Department of Energy to relay urgency of the matter to BSP and Total Energies EP (Brunei) BV and encourage them to increase oil and gas production. The LegCo member also suggested re-proposing BSP and Total Energies’ staff replacement plan to ensure that the main leadership positions in BSP consist of locals, to serve as an example to other Government-linked companies to follow.
In response, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah said, “In the field of oil and gas, sometimes if the issue is not handled on time, it will affect production in the coming years. It is not an issue that can be changed within a short period of time.
“Therefore, we always make sure that those who work in the oil and gas industry must have sufficient expertise, including local people working alongside foreigners, to ensure there is sufficient expertise and experience to carry out daily duties.”
The minister explained that the issue is not in the lack of a sense of urgency, as discussions are continuously being carried out with the BSP management.
However, during the COVID-19 pandemic, most engineers and workers could not enter the country, especially in 2020 and 2021, so many maintenance works could not be carried out, which ultimately affected the production.
“We also need to understand that we have been relying on oil and gas for many years, so the challenges we are facing have increased,” he said.