Aug. 8 (UPI) -- Bringing new partners to the offshore sector could support the effort to boost production to 3.5 million barrels per day, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. said.
The company, known by its acronym, ADNOC, said it was in "advanced discussions" with more than a dozen potential partners expressing an interest in offshore areas. The United Arab Emirates is strategically significant because its Fujairah port is the only export facility in the country that exists fully outside the Strait of Hormuz, the shipping chokepoint at the entrance of the Arabian Gulf.
The Fujairah port is the second-largest bunkering, or maritime fueling, port in the world, behind Singapore. To meet growing demand, the port is planning to expand its storage capacity for refined products by about 40 percent by the end of the decade.
Emirati Minister of State and CEO and ADNOC Ahmed al-Jaber said the offshore concession was part of a growth strategy that would unlock more value and expand production.
"Partners who can demonstrate tangible value-add to our operations through technology, expertise, long term capital and market access, as well as a shared commitment to drive operational performance and efficiency to deliver smart growth and strong financial returns," he said in a statement. "Our ideal partners should also be willing to invest across different parts of our value chain."
Austrian energy company OMV signed agreements last year with ADNOC and Occidental Petroleum, based in the United States, to conduct surveys for several undeveloped oil and gas fields off the coast of Abu Dhabi.
ADNOC said at the time it was in the midst of an overhaul of its regional assets. During the past five years, the company said it's completed projects contributing to a production rate of around 1.4 million new barrels of oil per day.
The United Arab Emirates is a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and party to the multilateral effort to balance an oversupplied market with production declines. Emirati production in July was around 2.9 million barrels per day, down from the fourth quarter average of 3.1 million bpd.
ADNOC would retain a 60 percent stake in any new offshore concessions.