PNG Delegation Visits Oil Search’s North Slope Operations
The PNG delegation to Alaska (pictured in Deadhorse) included Chris Haiveta, Governor, Gulf Province; Larry Andagali, Managing Director, Trans Wonderland; Mark Sakai, Chairman, Trans Wonderland; and John Kapi Natto, Director Petroleum Resources Kutubu.
Oil Search is using the knowledge, skills and experience gained in Papua New Guinea to add value to its operations in Alaska.
A PNG delegation, comprising a Member of Parliament and landowner leaders from Hela and Southern Highlands, were given a rare insight into Oil Search’s new international operations area in the Alaska North Slope and the successes that result from strong relationships with partners, indigenous landowner groups and governments.
The delegation included Chris Haiveta, Governor, Gulf Province; Larry Andagali, Managing Director, Trans Wonderland; Mark Sakai, Chairman, Trans Wonderland and Director Petroleum Resources Kutubu; and John Kapi Natto, Director Petroleum Resources Kutubu.
Accompanying them from Oil Search were Peter Botten, Managing Director; Gerea Aopi, PNG Country Chairman; Leon Buskens, General Manager for PNG Stakeholder Engagement; and Wayne Kasou, General Manager for Government Affairs. The group was hosted by Keiran Wulff, President, Oil Search Alaska.
Mr Haiveta’s Gulf Province is host to the proposed Papua LNG Project, as well as the PNG LNG Project gas pipeline and the oil pipeline that carries oil from Kutubu to the offshore Kumul Marine terminal. Mr Haiveta is also a director of the Mineral Resources Development Company.
“Ensuring long-term mutual benefit from our activities and developing strong stakeholder relationships are the foundations of the way Oil Search does business,” says Peter Botten, Oil Search Managing Director.
He said an added value of the Alaskan visit was in demonstrating how Oil Search is applying its experience working in remote and challenging PNG to its North Slope activities. A similar level of detail and planning is being applied in Alaska.
“PNG has been a great training and proving ground for Oil Search, and our experiences in PNG provide the basis for how we intend to operate in Alaska. Since we took over operatorship in early 2018, our cooperative and collaborative approach has been very well received. As we build our relationships in Alaska, we are seeing real potential for lessons from both regions to be shared, to the benefit of PNG and North Slope communities alike,” said Keiran Wulff, President, Oil Search Alaska.
“Oil Search’s experience working in challenging and remote areas of PNG is helping to set us up for success in remote Alaska. While the climates may differ, with temperatures on the North Slope sometimes as low as -50 degrees, it takes a similar level of attention to detail, logistics, local knowledge and planning to be successful. We have been very focused on learning from local partners, and over 2018, have recruited staff with 300 years combined experience operating on the North Slope.”
Oil Search recognizes that there can be significant benefit to both the Alaska and PNG stakeholders in sharing experiences in business development opportunities and benefits sharing.
In Anchorage, the delegation met with executives from the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation (ASRC), to look at ASRC’s sustainable community business model. ASRC is Alaska’s largest locally-owned and operated business, with 12,000 employees and revenues of more than US$2.3 billion. ASRC has been very successful by developing a series of diverse businesses which provide benefits to its shareholders.
“How the Alaskan communities have developed very successful and sustainable businesses, and their approach to sharing benefits broadly, could be a model for PNG,” said Mr Botten. “It was exciting to introduce the two parties recently in Alaska. We are really hopeful that it leads to a strong and fruitful relationship for both groups as they each balance development with preservation of their heritages.”
Oil Search continues to make great strides in delivering material value from its Alaskan North Slope acquisition in the United States and the recent visit by the PNG delegation aims to drive further value for all stakeholders, PNG communities included.
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