Three years ago the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) started a project to implement a new online registration system for the oilfield service companies (OSCs) operating in the region’s oil & gas sector. After years of planning and development, the MNR officially launched the new system in November 2016, having successfully completed a two-month pilot.
This new system will permit oilfield services companies to register their business and list their services, all online. It will allow the service companies to be added to the Approved Vendor List (AVL) of each category of their relative services, this will result in receiving tenders from the oil & gas operators directly from the system, instead of receiving them manually from the operator. In addition, companies will be able to easily access their online profiles to keep information updated, which was not an easy task previously. This type of service company registration portal is widely used in many countries, but according to leading industry OSC evaluations expert, Dr. Nimmo Dragomelo, Senior OSC Evaluator for the project, very few, if any, match the MNR’s system.
How it Works
The new registration system is open for all OSCs who wish to work in the oil & gas sector of Kurdistan. Companies can find the application form on the MNR Portal website. Applicant companies will need to pass the criteria set by the MNR for the new registration system. “If you have the necessary documents, the application process shouldn’t take too long,” said Jorge Birbuet, the General Manager at KPRS, the third-party evaluator that has been awarded the project of evaluating applications and managing the new online system.
Companies will not be permitted to submit their application, unless they answer all the questions, and upload all the required documents.
After the companies fill in the general questionnaire, and upload a signed copy of the Commitment and Compliance Package written by the MNR, they may then begin listing their company’s AVLs.
The system’s AVL page is easy to follow through. The page features over 200 different AVLs, with various restrictions in-place depending on the ownership structure. Companies will also have to complete an application for each AVL they apply for in order to prove they are qualified to provide the service. Then, depending on the types of AVLs they have applied for, applicants must fill in a technical questionnaire, focusing on quality, health, safety, the environment and community engagement.
The final step in the application is submission and payment. Once a company’s application is submitted, it will take a minimum of 15 working days for the MNR to review the application.
What Happens After an Application is Submitted
A team based in London will evaluate the submitted applications; all approved applications will be sent to a joint committee made up of members of the MNR and members of international oil companies working in the KRG. If the joint committee approves the application and related AVL listings, the information will be updated on the online system. Registered companies will need to update their information on an on-going basis, but will also be expected to renew their applications annually.
Implementing the New Registration System in the KRG
Registration is mandatory for all oil service companies in the KRG, and as of January the 1st, 2017, the old AVL system will no longer be relied upon. The MNR has given the companies in the region a period of three months to register on the new online system. In taking this step, the region’s largest industry sector and main source of income will go online.
“I do believe that other ministries in the KRG will follow in the near future,” said Mr. Birbuet when asked about the influence this move could have on the region.
This is a major step forward to better governance for the KRG, and possibly a kick-starter for other government departments in both the Kurdistan region and Federal Iraq to start moving processes online. We thank KPRS and the MNR for allowing us to cover this news.