Oman plans to bring electricity, oil and gas under one umbrella
The sultanate’s government is working on plans to bring power, oil and gas sectors under the ambit of a single umbrella with a view to have higher efficiency, better coordination and understanding of natural gas allotment, according to a senior official at the Ministry of Oil and Gas.
“A critical recommendation by Tanfeedh was to bring all the aspects of energy under one umbrella,” H E Salim bin Nasser al Aufi, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Oil and Gas said while speaking at 6th Oman Energy Forum organised by Gulf Intelligence, last week.
Explaining the initiative, H E Aufi said that the recommendation was made to take away electricity sector from the Public Authority for Electricity and Water (Diam), and put it under the Ministry of Oil and Gas. The combined entity may be called as the Ministry of Oil, Gas and Energy, he added.
“There are still challenges in implementing this [plan] and lots of other details regarding supervision, asset allocations and financial matters related to governance are yet to be finalised, according to my knowledge,” H E Aufi said.
There are lots of discussions going on about the allocation of natural gas to various sectors and it makes sense to have energy and electricity under one umbrella so that decisions in near future can be made with a total understanding, he said.
H E Aufi further revealed that natural gas consumption is likely to keep growing, and a rational approach for allocating gas on a priority basis, keeping future requirements in mind is urgently needed.
Currently, natural gas accounts for around 97 per cent of total fuel requirement of Oman’s power sector. Some positive steps have been taken in this direction by moving towards more solar power generation but more needs to be done, he added.