From the Editor: The Road to Aberdeen

Published Aug 22, 2005
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The organisers promise us one of the most “influential, vibrant, and significant events in the petroleum industry calendar”, and we’re not doubting that OE 2005 (the new moniker for Offshore Europe) will be just that. This year’s theme is “Managing Mature Production: A Global Challenge”, which, considering the price of oil and renewed North Sea activity, makes it a particularly timely event. But this is not surprising, Offshore Europe has always been right on target.

And this issue – if you ask us – is a perfect fit with this year’s Offshore Europe. This should be no surprise to anyone, as we’ve been planning for the conference for quite some time.

Starting off, we’ve once again interviewed Thorhild Widvey, Norway’s Minister of Petroleum and Energy. After more than a year on the job, she’s really made a lasting mark on activities taking place on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. We were also very fortunate to have been granted an interview with the UK Minister of State for Energy, Malcolm Wicks. Although MP Wicks has only held this position since last May, it’s clear that he’s quickly found his pace.

Both ministers comment on the newly signed cross-border agreement as well as on the ongoing licensing rounds on both sides. So we’ve also included an overview that not only describes the licensing rounds in the UK and Norway, but includes most other areas in the northern Atlantic. And looking to the East, we also include a summary of licensing activity in Asia.

A large part of this issue concentrates on pipelines. We have contributions that look into planning, laying, testing, not to mention protective coatings and maintenance. From Langeled in our own backyard (yet another example of Norwegian-British co-operation) to the recently inaugurated Baku-Tiblisi- Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline and proposed South American Southern Cone gas pipeline, the scope is global.

But other innovative technologies are also included. Dynamic positioning for offshore vessels aids in platform fabrication and maintenance, and this issue includes both what you’ll see in the latest bridge as well as an overview of how motion control systems do the job. Mechanized drilling and well maintenance tractors are included here as well. If you’re curious about subsea innovations, we have multiphase boosting technology as well as a report about DNV’s new Recommended Practice for the design of subsea equipment.

Our and financial articles include a production forecast tailored to Offshore Europe from Douglas-Westwood and PricewaterhouseCoopers has provided an analysis that indicates that oil companies may by on the verge of an increase in M&A activities.

We also have pictorial reviews of several recent conferences: Eage in Madrid, Mioge in Moscow and Nor-Shipping in Oslo. If you see one of our representatives carrying a camera at Offshore Europe, smile and you might see yourself in the next issue.

So, as you read this, you are hopefully enjoying a quiet moment at work or in the midst of an exciting conference. If you bump into one of us at one of the conferences we’ll be attending, let us know if there’s anything you’d like to see in an upcoming issue.

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