PABD oversees Brunei oil and gas sector

James Kon

His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam has consented to the Petroleum Authority of Brunei Darussalam (PABD) Order, 2019 which commenced on December 31, 2019.

The Order allows for the formation of the PABD, its Board and matters connected to the operations, functions and duties.

The PABD is a statutory body tasked by the Ministry of Energy to undertake regulation and monitoring of operations and infrastructure in the upstream, midstream and downstream oil and gas sector, and act as custodian of petroleum data in Brunei Darussalam.

The establishment of the PABD serves as an important milestone in the development of the oil and gas sector in Brunei Darussalam by contributing to a more conducive business environment for the industry. The consolidation of operational regulatory functions of the oil and gas sector into a single entity is intended to streamline operations and provide clarity to businesses and potential investors for growth and diversification of the oil and gas industry. The statutory body will also serve as a technical resource to the government on petroleum matters.

The body acts as the Ministry of Energy’s operational arm to coordinate the development of the petroleum sector towards long-term energy security and ensure prudent and sustainable exploitation and development of national oil and gas resources, according to strategic direction set by the ministry. Among its key roles are the monitoring, development and implementation of technical guidelines and standards to enhance value derived from the sector.

This supports a more resilient stable oil and gas sector for long-term economic development.

A part of the operational functions related to the oil and gas sector under the Ministry of Energy merged with the operational regulatory functions from PetroleumBrunei under the PABD. Hence PetroleumBrunei performs as a commercial entity without a conflicting regulatory role.

The PABD is governed by a Board of Directors chaired by the Minister of Energy and comprises the Deputy Minister of Energy as Deputy Chairman; Permanent Secretary (Policy and Fiscal) and Permanent Secretary (Investment) at the Ministry of Finance and Economy; Permanent Secretary (Infrastructure, Housing and Professional) at the Ministry of Development; and Permanent Secretary (Energy) at the Ministry of Energy.

The Permanent Secretary (Energy) also serves as Interim Managing Director.