BP seeks opportunities in Qatar oil and gas sector

02 November 2007

UK oil major BP is in discussions with Qatar Petroleum (QP) to re-enter the state's upstream oil and gas sector after a break of 15 years. However, any opportunities are likely to be delayed until the next round of oil and gas exploration begins.

Doug Rotenberg, president of global liquefied natural gas (LNG) at BP, says the company is actively searching for new opportunities in Qatar's upstream sector.

'We would like to be a bigger player in the [Middle East] region generally and Qatar is a big part of that,' he says.

He adds that BP's experience in developing Oman's tight gas programme at the central Khazzan and Makarem fields could be useful for extracting gas in Qatar in the future.

While QP has suggested it would like to work with all international oil companies (IOCs), a senior executive at the state-run oil firm says BP would face a long wait, along with other oil majors, to join any North field projects.

'We have a lot of companies interested in working with us,' says the QP executive. 'It may be that BP can join us in one of our offshore exploration programmes but it is too early to say.'

BP sold its 7.5 per cent stake in the Qatargas liquefied natural gas joint venture in 1992 and has not held a stake in any sizeable oil and gas ventures in the country since.

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