By Udeme Akpan
A research released by independent energy firm Rystad Energy states that with a sharp growth in the number of new projects being brought forward by oil and gas operators the oil field service industry is likely to face capacity constraints heading into 2020.
“About 250 new oil and gas projects are likely to be sanctioned for development in 2020, up from 160 in 2016, and bottlenecks among suppliers appear inevitable,” the Rystad said in its latest market report on the global service market.
Floating production contractors, subsea installation players and fabricators of liquefied natural gas facilities will all likely struggle to keep up with the surge in demand for their services, thus causing projects schedules to slip, the firm said, adding exploration and production companies will find themselves in a fierce competition to secure capacity.
“Deepwater projects are now in a challenging situation as they are heavily dependent on SURF and FPSO contractors,” says Audun Martinsen, Head of Oilfield Services at Rystad Energy. “Deepwater fields have been among the most sought after supply sources in recent years, next to the shale bonanza, and the increase in massive contract awards to players in the deepwater industry now could put constraints on further field sanctioning activity.”
Another complicating factor is the massive push by certain offshore energy companies to move ahead with offshore wind projects. According to Rystad Energy, 25 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind capacity is now operational, and this is poised to double to more than 50 GW by 2022.
This implies a massive increase in demand for installation of offshore wind power cables, climbing from 1800 km in 2019 to an unprecedented 4300 km in 2022 – thereby surpassing the amount of subsea cable installation work from the oil and gas industry.