The head of the Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) said yesterday that the regulator was already a third of the way to achieving one of the goals entrepreneur Sir Ian Wood had set out.
Sir Ian recommended the creation of the OGA in the Wood Review, which was published in 2014, just months before the oil price plummeted.
OGA chief executive Andy Samuel said Sir Ian wanted a regulator that could help bring billions more barrels to market.
Mr Samuel said the OGA was making good progress in hitting its targets and called on industry to keep up the momentum.
“We are performance focused. Industry has paid for us through a levy and we want to be able to demonstrate our consistent value so I make sure I track closely the performance of my team,” Mr Samuel said at the Southern North Sea Conference and Exhibition in Norwich.
“Sir Ian Wood envisaged that we would add three billion additional barrels over a decade. We’re close to a billion already. So I think it shows that when we work together we can really make a difference quite quickly.”
Mr Samuel said companies should take their share of the credit for the achievement, but that the OGA was certainly speeding up progress.
He said the OGA had recently stepped in to solve a commercial issue between operators, enabling three new wells will be drilled.
Mr Samuel said: “We can’t take 100% of the credit, but without us the issue could have taken another 18 months to resolve.”