New Representative Body Creates Stronger Voice for UK Offshore Oil and Gas

The launch of Oil & Gas UK, the new representative body with membership open to all companies active in the UK offshore oil and gas industry, was officially announced in Aberdeen on Monday, April 23rd.

The new association will for the first time unite in one forum all companies with a stake in the future of the UK offshore oil and gas industry, from super majors to large contractor businesses and from small independent oil companies to SMEs working in the supply chain (see below for a list of the Associations initial members).

The first joint chairmen of Oil & Gas UK will be Dave Blackwood, head of BP's North Sea Business, and Tom Smith, managing director of Nessco Ltd, and the chief executive will be Malcolm Webb, who formerly held that role at the UK Offshore Operators Association (UKOOA).

The first Board of the new organization comprises 16 leaders drawn from across the industry.

Dave Blackwood said: "The role of Oil & Gas UK is to develop and further the case for a safe, sustainable and successful future for the UK offshore oil and gas industry. It will do that by promoting an active and informed dialogue within and across all sectors of the industry on the issues affecting it, whether of a technical, financial, economic, safety, environmental, social or any other nature, and developing co-operative solutions to those issues. The combined perspective of operators, non-operators and contractors will give our activities greater depth and a more coherent voice for the industry, particularly in its conversations with the government."

Tom Smith said: "The UK's oil and gas supply chain has emerged as a significant economic sector in its own right. Its future is very much linked to the future of North Sea oil and gas production. The time is therefore right for the creation of a new industry body which represents the whole of the oil and gas sector, simplifying the industry's overall engagement with government, regulators and other organizations as well as managing that representation more efficiently by replacing the Industry Leadership Team (ILT)."

Malcolm Webb said: "Oil & Gas UK continues a process started several years ago to give the UK oil and gas industry a forward looking and dynamic representative body with the skills and resources required to address the full range of issues before it. The Association will operate from premises in Aberdeen, London and Brussels to develop and deliver pan-industry policies to secure the long-term health of the sector."

Oil & Gas UK's first formal engagement takes place tomorrow (April 24, 2007) at one of the regular PILOT meetings where its Board of Directors, representing the industry, will meet with the Secretary of State of Trade & Industry, Alistair Darling, other government representatives from the UK and Scotland and the trade unions to discuss issues of current concern.