The Group Managing Director of the Nigeria’s National Petroleum Corporation, (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Baru said Nigeria’s participation at the annual Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston, Texas, United States of America, had grown from mere jamboree-like activity in the 1990’s to a fully-fledged engagement where indigenous oil services companies parade their competencies and proven job profile to the global oil and gas industry.
Speaking at the opening of the Nigerian pavilion Monday at the 50th edition of the OTC in Houston, Dr. Baru gave kudos to Nigerian companies for their doggedness, which he said, had struggled through the years under the auspices of the Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN) to evolve into global reckoning in providing effective service delivery across the industry value chain.
“When we started pushing for local content in the early 90’s the drive was to see Nigerian companies retain value in-country and I am happy to acknowledge that they are not only utilizing the opportunities in terms of simply giving services, but are participating in hi-tech works and projects,’’ he said.
Dr. Baru expressed delight that some of the indigenous companies had even ventured to the industrialized world, including Norway which operates under very difficult terrain and sub-sea levels.
Earlier in his address, Bank Anthony Okoroafor, Chairman of PETAN, thanked the corporation for encouraging the growth of indigenous service companies in the industry through extensive and sustained patronage. Okoroafor singled out the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company, (NPDC) in this regard.
Highlight of the opening ceremony was the unveiling of the special NNPC brochure for OTC 2018 titled: “NNPC: Rooted in Nigeria, Global in Aspiration”.
In his Welcome address at the OTC @ 50 Legacy Launch, Wafik Baydoun, Chairman of the OTC Board of Directors, declared that in 2018, OTC had the extra mile by reflecting on the industry’s impressive accomplishments of the last 50 years.
He said that when OTC was first launched, offshore exploration was limited to 100 metres but after five decades of continues technological innovations, the deepest project operates today in 2, 900 metres.
Baydoun envisaged that OTC would start to look ahead in 2019 to what the next 50 years would offer and must continue to leverage its role as the beacon of offshore resources and environmental matters by providing a platform where industry professionals converge to promote technological innovations.
The maiden Offshore Technology Conference took place in Houston between 19-21 May 1969 with more than 2,500 registrants, 112 papers presented, and 368 exhibitors.
Today the vent averages more than 70, 000 attendees, 450 paper presentations and has 2500 exhibitors. The conference set an attendance record in 2014 with 108, 300 attendees, breaking the previous record set 32 years earlier.