DAMMAM – Norway is offering its technology and expertise in oil recovery, including a wide range of associated services in the petroleum industry that will enhance Saudi Arabia’s oil and gas production.
A delegation of Norwegian petroleum experts met members of the Asharqia Chamber Monday offering a wide range of technology and services in the oil and gas sector.
The delegation will have a meeting with Saudi Aramco to discuss issues of mutual interest, according to Carl Wibye, Norwegian Ambassador to the Kingdom.
“Norway sees a big opportunity in cooperation between Norway and Saudi Arabia, particularly in the petroleum industry, specifically in oil recovery and in providing an environment-friendly regime in oil production,” Wibye said.
Norway is the sixth-largest net oil exporter in the world, after Saudi Arabia, Russia, UAE, Iran and Kuwait, producing 2.47 million barrels per day, exporting about 2.25 million bb/d, and consuming about 217,000 bbl/d in 2008.
Norway’s oil service industry generated $38 billion in 2009, exporting its products and expertise to the United States, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, according to Wibye.
Gunnar Gjerde, head of the Norwegian delegation, said that it is a good time for Saudi Aramco to enhance its oil recovery program. “Saudi Aramco has reached its productivity peak as required by the market, and it is now time to invest in the oil technology sector, such as in oil recovery,” he said.
Abdulrahman Rashed Al-Rashed, president of Asharqia Chambers, urged the Norwegian delegation to provide added value to the offer of providing technology to the Kingdom’s petroleum industry.
He said setting up cooperation agreements or joint ventures with local companies will provide an impetus for securing added value.
Khaled Al-Abdulkarim, president of Al-Abdulkarim Holding Company, which has interests in providing services to the local and regional oil sector, proposed the establishment of a Saudi-Norwegian training center to train young Saudis in the field of oil technology.
Innovation Norway, Norway’s major provider and exporter of a wide range of services in the petroleum industry, has been urged to lead the way in setting up the training center.
Norway has yet to expand its investments in the Kingdom. So far, major Norwegian investments in Saudi Arabia have been through Norconsult Telemetric, provider of telecommunication technology to Saudi Arabia’s IT sector, and Jotun, a leading paint manufacturing company.
Wibye said bilateral trade between Saudi Arabia and Norway has been increasing. Two-way trade reached over $300 million in 2009, with about $200 million exports to the Kingdom and $100 million imports.
“We would like to have a strong presence in the local oil industry; we have lots of products to offer in the petroleum sector through partnerships with local companies,” Gjerde said. – SG