Being invited to take part and present at this year’s Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston is a real honour and a recognition of the dynamic oil and gas sector in Scotland.
With decades of experience recovering oil and gas from the challenging North Sea, Scotland now has a global reputation for dynamism, drive, vision and innovation within the industry.
This year marks the 44th anniversary of OTC, the world’s foremost event for the development of offshore resources in the fields of drilling, exploration, production and environmental protection.
It is a fantastic opportunity to put the skills of our industry on show and for me to see and hear first-hand about innovative ideas and developments within the oil and gas sector.
The work that my colleagues from Scottish Development International, the international arm of Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands & Islands Enterprise, have put in to ensure that the Scottish Pavilion has a strong presence should be commended.
This year we have an impressive total of 50 Scottish companies exhibiting at the event, an increase from previous years – showing the strength of the industry nationally and internationally.
Each of those Scottish companies taking part in the event is playing a huge part and having a major impact in the global market and industry. A lot of this is down to the unrivaled knowledge, expertise and innovation that they bring.
During my time at OTC I will meet and support those companies – in securing new business, promoting Scotland’s expertise, and building connections across the global oil and gas industry through our dedicated Scottish pavilion area of the exhibition.
New and emerging exporters are benefiting from a strong branded Scottish presence and the shared benefits of being associated with our global reputation and our North Sea heritage.
With more than half of the value of the North Sea’s oil and gas reserves yet to be extracted, up to 24billion recoverable barrels with a potential wholesale value of £1.5trillion, oil and gas will remain an enormous economic resource in Scotland for decades to come.
What OTC gives us is the chance to show that not only do we have a buoyant industry at home, we have enormous global potential to increase exports and awareness of Scotland’s oil and gas capabilities and strengths.
Fergus Ewing is Scotland’s Energy Minister