UAE oil and gas turns focus to big data

More than half of senior oil and gas professionals in the UAE see solid or high potential for big data and analytics

Picture for illustrative purposes only.
Picture for illustrative purposes only.

Only one in five UAE oil and gas companies see themselves as highly digitalised, according to research by DNV GL.

More than half of senior oil and gas professionals in the UAE see solid or high potential for big data and analytics to transform the operating efficiency of the industry in 2016.

This is reflected in investment intentions with 40% planning significant or moderate investment in big data and analytics in 2016, higher than the global average of 36%.

“A few early adopters in data are emerging, but many in the industry are still at very early stages of maturity. More than half of seniors in our industry see solid or high potential for big data and analytics to transform the industry’s operating efficiency,” Anupam Ghosal, regional manager for Middle East and India at DNV GL – Oil & Gas.

“It is positive to see that 40% in the UAE are investing in this area just when the industry needs these operational efficiencies most.”

“The oil and gas industry can learn from other sectors that have embraced digital technologies early on, such as aviation, retail and logistics.

“Cross-industry collaboration is essential to bridge this digital gap and ensure experience transfer in the conservation of data, efficiency drivers and ways to ultimately embrace data centricity.

“As in other industries, a key driver behind the digital transformation in the Middle East’s oil and gas industry will be the increasing need for efficiency and enhanced customer experience at all levels of customer interaction points,” added Anupam.

DNV GL has identified key opportunities to reduce costs by optimising day-to-day operations:

• Condition monitoring for more effective maintenance and inspection regimes, dictated by specific, industry, historical and real-time data. Replacing planned maintenance with preventive maintenance, driven by early warnings from sensor data, can significantly reduce downtime.
• Instant information from wells can provide timely decisions on underperforming wells and other potential issues that, if not dealt with, could lead to enormous costs.
• Detecting anomalies while drilling and during operation can also lead to more effective decisions for cost savings.

Elisabeth Tørstad, CEO of DNV GL – Oil & Gas, said: “Our customers say that a number of key challenges need to be addressed to capitalise on the opportunities within Big Data; robust strategies to capture, manage and utilise critical data, access to reliable, trustworthy data, and stringent security to minimize security breaches.

“We are working with the industry to help it manage the risks and leverage the opportunities associated with digitalisation.

“Cyber-attacks on in the oil and gas industry have grown in stature and sophistication in recent years, making them more difficult to detect and defend against, and costing companies increasing sums of money to recover from,” added Tørstad.

This new threat is reflected in investment levels; cyber security is the IT-related digital technology expected to have the highest investment in 2016 by 53% of respondents in the UAE closely followed by automation and remote operation.
 

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Oil & Gas Middle East - September 2020

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