NERA Chairman Ken Fitzpatrick and Chief Executive Miranda Taylor hosted panels at the South East Asia Australia Offshore and Onshore Conference (SEAAOC), held in Darwin from 15 to 17 August.
SEAAOC is northern Australia’s largest and longest established petroleum conference which brings together senior representatives from across Australasia’s oil, gas and petroleum industries.
Mr Fitzpatrick identified a number of industry challenges while chairing a panel on new markets and participating in a panel discussion about optimising stranded gas and domestic supply options.
These challenges included optimising productivity during capital intensive phases, reducing operating margins, and working with regulators and communities in future industry development.
“Science needs to be tempered with a deeper understanding of community sentiment and expectations in order to develop constructive relationships and trust with these communities, and secure the industry’s social license to operate,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.
“Similarly, community trust in the government’s ability to regulate appropriately is essential.”
Ms Taylor facilitated a panel discussion about innovation in the supply chain, including engaging SMEs to improve competitiveness and agility within the Northern Territory energy resources innovation ecosystem, how to capitalise on existing opportunities to drive capacity and capability building, and reconceptualising the skills to support automation, robotics and digital solutions.
“The only way we can assist the energy resources sector become a leading global player in an increasingly competitive international environment is to transform our thinking and processes to deliver innovative solutions that directly address industry challenges,” Ms Taylor said.
“If we have an environment that is innovative and agile, that has the scale to support cross-sector collaboration, and the people with the relevant skills, we will have an activated northern Australia that will lead to more jobs and greater opportunity.”
Ms Taylor was also keynote speaker at a roundtable discussion with Minister for Primary Industry and Resources Ken Vowles, Northern Territory engineering and industry leaders, representatives from Charles Darwin University and others to discuss what needs to be done to secure maximum value and community benefit from investment in the energy resources sector.