A leap of faith to do something different…together
A lot has been said about Australia's challenge for the title of top LNG producer. Looking at our form guide going into the contest, you’d say that we’re a shoe in. However, according to a recent presentation by top oil and gas executive Mary Hackett, we may need to address the relationships of a few of our players off the pitch before we can press for the number one title.
“We have this perceived notion that we compete against each other here in Australia,” said Mary at the Petroleum Club’s February Industry Dinner.
Despite having the resources and technical capability built on a 70-year track record in the industry the Australian Oil & Gas sector’s culture of “one-upmanship” has the potential to hold us back.
According to Ms Hackett, the oil and gas sector should take a leaf out of e-Commerce leaders such as Amazon and eBay’s playbook and redefine, narrow and in some cases eliminate, relationships between suppliers, manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, and consumers. A process referred to as disintermediation by Hackett, and traditionally referred to as “the removal of intermediaries from the supply chain” or, to be more precise, “cutting out the middleman”.
The current market structure is principally supported from Perth and relies on bespoke bi-lateral agreements between operators and service companies, which is inconsistent, inefficient and in many cases causes duplications.
The Director of the LNG Marine Fuel Institute and Co-Chair of the Energy Industry Collaboration Group says that the industry needs to partner and create strategic alliances before it can claim the throne.
According to Hackett common sense must prevail, and we will eventually develop some form of distributed, collaborative supply chain.
During her presentation, Mary proposed the possibility of a regional channel for accelerated business outcomes including simplification, standardisation and sharing. The channel would encompass a single industry platform with standardised processes, common business infrastructure and will be scaled to address operating context.
The Australian oil and gas industry has built the dream, and countless people have paved the way, but the primary challenge is moving from self-interest to regional interest and national interest.
“I think as far as Australia is concerned if we get over ourselves and create something that is truly collaborative that draws on technology, we’ll get that crown and sit on that throne for a very long time.”