MUSCAT: The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Oman Society for Petroleum Services (OPAL), the representative body of the nation’s pivotal oil and gas industry, was held at the Crowne Plaza Muscat last week, attracting a capacity audience of more than 300 company representatives and executives.
The record turnout was a testament to the Society’s growing prominence as the voice of the hydrocarbon industry and a recognition of its definitive role in driving best practice, standards and professionalism in the oil and gas sector.
Salim bin Nasser al Aufi, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Oil and Gas, was the Guest of Honour on the occasion. Also present were the CEOs, Managing Directors and Country Heads of a number of upstream companies and contracting firms.
The highlight of the evening was the election of a new Board of Directors comprising Dr Amer al Rawas, Group CEO — Tasneea Oil & Gas (as Chairman); Aflah al Hadhrami, VP — Oxy (as Vice Chairman); Husam al Jahdhami, Engineering Director — PDO (as Treasurer); Ashraf al Maamari, VP Corporate Affairs — OCCEP; Hamoud al Tobi, CEO — Al Shawamikh Oil Services SAOC; Khalid al Kindi, Deputy General Manager — BP and Mohsin al Hadhrami, CEO — Schlumberger.
Earlier, in opening remarks, OPAL CEO Musallam al Mandhri outlined the significant strides achieved by the Society during the past year, in line with its reinvigorated and broadened mandate to as the industry’s principal platform. In particular, OPAL continued to work closely with the Ministry of Oil and Gas, Ministry of Manpower and the ICV Committees to build a robust skills development infrastructure focusing primarily on technical competencies.
A notable highpoint of the past year was the Society’s success in compiling and publishing the keenly awaited standards for Road Safety, Camp Accommodation and Heat Stress Management. The three sets of standards were formally unveiled at the AGM.
Another laudable achievement is the rollout of National Occupational Standards (NOS) for welding professionals. This pilot project is a precursor to establishing similar NOS norms for other trades in conjunction with the industry, training institutes and government trained professionals. NOS norms for HSE Officers and Lifting Equipment skillsets are currently under finalisation, he said.
Outgoing Chairman Majid al Toky described his lengthy association with the Society going back more than a decade, as fulfilling and rewarding. He said he was happy to see OPAL on solid ground both financially and operationally He voiced confidence that OPAL would evolve into a hub for national talent development, better regulation and HSE, and a ‘go-to’ place for crisis management.
Also at the AGM, the financial report for the year ended on December 31, 2016 was presented by Haifa al Khaifi, Treasurer — OPAL. Another highlight was the launch of the Mobile Library, a major CSR initiative organised by OPAL on behalf of its 400-plus members. The Mobile Library has been gifted to Dar al Atta’a, the well-known Omani charity.