former caspian chief executive to head bp’s oman operations
BP has named Michael Townshend, until recently chief executive officer of the Baku-Tibilisi-Ceyhan Pipeline Company, as president of BP Oman.
Townshend’s task will be to oversee the establishment of BP’s exploration and production operations in Oman and the implementation of a multi-year programme to appraise the Khazzan and Makarem gas fields. The company in January signed a production sharing agreement (PSA) for the appraisal and development of the fields.
“Michael brings unparalleled project management experience to Oman,” explained Steve Peacock, president, exploration & production, BP Middle East & South Asia. “Our work on the Khazzan and Makarem fields will require the rapid integration and delivery of seismic, drilling and sour gas facilities. The combination of Michael’s experience coupled with BP’s North American tight gas expertise will prove invaluable.”
The PSA covers an area of some 2,800 square kilometres in central Oman, including the Khazzan and Makarem gas fields which were discovered in 1993 but have remained undeveloped due to the complexity of their ‘tight gas’ reservoirs. BP will conduct a comprehensive multi-year appraisal programme to understand the nature of the reservoirs, with work on the initial phase slated to begin by year-end.
“This is a very exciting project for both Oman and BP. We look forward to setting up our operation over the next few months, and to begin the appraisal work, including seismic, new wells and conducting extended well tests, later this year,” said Townshend.
Townshend has 26 years experience with BP, covering a variety of roles from Alaska to Indonesia in engineering, project management, strategic planning and mergers & acquisitions. He was responsible for all of BP’s onshore upstream projects and operations in Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey including the construction and operation of the BTC oil and South Caucasus gas pipelines, two further operating pipelines, three terminals and various rail and shipping operations. He became the Chief Executive Officer of the BTC Company in 2002 and moved to the Middle East in 2006.
BP is one of the world's largest companies with nearly 100,000 employees and operations in more than 100 countries on six continents. The company’s main activities are oil & gas exploration and production, refining, marketing and supply & transportation.
The company’s regional exploration and production operations are headquartered in Abu Dhabi, with a wide-ranging portfolio of activities across the region. Dubai is the regional hub for BP’s refining and marketing businesses. The Dubai-based businesses include Air BP, BP Middle East Lubricants, BP Marine and Integrated Supply & Trading.
BP has worldwide expertise producing tight and other forms of ‘challenging’ gas. The company operates around 3 billion cubic feet of challenging gas per day from fields in North Africa, Sharjah, Canada and the United States of America. For example, BP is developing tight gas deposits at the $2.2 billion development of the Wamsutter field in Wyoming, USA, where it currently operates 950 wells. The company also has tight gas operations in the San Juan basin in Colorado, where it leads the industry not only in terms of scale of operations, but also in coalbed methane production technology and environmental stewardship.
The Khazzan and Makarem deal marks BP’s entry into the Oman’s exploration and production sector. The company’s existing activities in the Sultanate which include the distribution of BP lubricants through the Oil Marketing Company SAOG (OOMCO), technical and commercial services provided by Air BP at Muscat’s Seeb Airport and an extensive BP Marine fuel bunkering operation at Salalah Port.
For further information please contact:
Fares Ghneim, BP International, Abu Dhabi: +971 2 632 3999