OGA Investigating Possible License Breach

OGA Investigating Possible License Breach
The UK Oil and Gas Authority has opened an investigation into a possible breach of reporting requirements under a license.

The UK Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) has revealed that it has opened an investigation into a possible breach of reporting requirements under a license. 

The organization said the investigation follows an enquiry which concluded that there was sufficient evidence of a breach to go ahead. According to the OGA, which did not disclose the license or any parties involved in the case, the investigation will, among other things, gather and assess further information, offer the company concerned the opportunity to provide written representations, and decide how the case should be resolved.

The OGA highlighted that the investigation follows the publication in October 2020 of the Thematic Review into Industry Compliance with Regulatory Obligations. The review, which examined compliance in six areas of interaction between the OGA and licensees, identified some “very good”, and “improving”, practice, but also noted the need for further improvement and warned that sanctions could follow in cases where breaches were found, the OGA noted.

The review followed a June 2019 OGA letter to licensees and infrastructure owners which outlined the OGA’s regulatory approach. Although the letter praised a great deal of constructive engagement, it noted that too many issues were taking too long to resolve and warned that “we will be progressively more proactive in using the OGA’s powers”. 

The OGA’s website states that its role is to maximize the economic recovery of the UK’s oil and gas resources, while also supporting the move to net zero carbon by 2050. Earlier this month, the OGA’s revised strategy - which reflects the ongoing energy transition and features a range of net zero obligations on the oil and gas industry - came into force.

Created as one of the key recommendations of Sir Ian Wood’s 2014 Review of the UK Continental Shelf, the OGA became an executive agency on April 1, 2015. On October 1, 2016, it became a government company, limited by shares under the Companies Act 2006, with the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy the sole shareholder. The OGA is largely funded by an industry levy introduced in October 2015.

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