Upcoming tenders, worth millions of pounds, for operations and maintenance (O&M) work are now advertised on North Sea regulator’s website.
In doing so, the NSTA is aiming to give the supply chain confidence to invest in people, skills and new technologies.
Several leading operators, including Cnooc, Neptune Energy and Repsol Sinopec, have already published forward work plans on the digital portal.
O&M work is a substantial undertaking for North Sea companies, and generates significant annual expenditure.
Scores of contracts are regularly offered or renewed for services including equipment rental, crane and facilities management, inspection and logistics.
Stuart Payne, NSTA director of supply chain, decommissioning and HR, said: “Seeing and being able to respond to activities in our energy sector is vital for a UK supply chain whose expertise will help us secure domestic energy supplies and deliver the energy transition.
“This enhanced function, focused on maintenance and operations contracts, adds another layer to Pathfinder and will provide huge benefits to service companies.
“We welcome the far-sighted input of the operators who have already entered details on Pathfinder and look forward to seeing even more companies add their forward work plans.”
Previously, the pathfinder tended to be dominated by contracts for new oil and gas or energy transition projects, rather than ongoing work.
North Sea giant Cnooc has wasted little time in using the new function to share details about its upcoming activity.
The Chinese operator is preparing three separate contracts for condition monitoring and predictive analytic support services, crane management services, and metering management services.
All three tenders fall in the less than £5 million bracket, and are estimated to land in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Repsol Sinopec also has two contracts, each worth more than £5m, due out before the end of the year for fabric maintenance and asset support services, and integrity and inspection services.
A third contract for provision of offshore labour, with a duration of five years, is expected to tender in the first quarter of 2023.
Meanwhile Neptune Energy plans to issue a vessel deal as part of its ‘walk to work’ campaign at the Cygnus field.
Instead of helicopter transport, the company is using a ship to transport workers, lowering emissions.
The contract, estimated to last just over a week, is due out in Q4 2022.
Listening to supply chain challenges
Mr Payne said: “We hear constantly from the supply chain that visibility of work is an ongoing challenge. This is a great example of helping fix that problem.
“The Energy Pathfinder tool is already providing information on energy projects, including oil and gas, carbon storage and offshore wind.”
Pathfinder was launched in 2010 to meet service companies’ requests for a clearer picture of new oil and gas field development work, helping them to target opportunities more effectively.
Operators were required to upload details of projects and provide contact details to make it easier for suppliers to get in touch with procurement teams.
Last year, the NSTA expanded the database to host more information about a wider range of North Sea projects, including well decommissioning campaigns, and offshore wind and carbon capture and storage schemes.
More than 1,300 subscribers receive monthly emails listing all recent updates on pathfinder, which currently hosts details of about 140 projects.