Bureau Veritas, an international inspection, audit and certification group, says prospects in the oil and gas (O&G) sector in the region are good with more related activities expected to take place in the coming years.
Its vice-president, research and development (marine division), Pierre Besse, said many petroleum companies were already planning exploration activities for new O&G reserves.
He said more deepwater exploration activities would take place in Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam and onshore O&G exploration activities in oil-rich Myanmar which is still fully untapped.
â€œBooming activities in the O&G sector mean relevant authorities and agencies will make great effort to regulate market order and improve certification effectiveness,â€ Besse told StarBiz after signing a MoU with Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) recently.
Under the agreement, both will undertake joint academic and research activities in marine technology. Bureau Veritas also presented two software applications â€“ â€œArianeâ€ and â€œHydrostarâ€ â€“ worth 60,000 euros to UTM.
The applications are widely used by shipping companies worldwide to mitigate problems in the movements and berthing of container and liquefied natural gas vessels and floating, production, storage and off-loading platforms.
Besse said the company would support Malaysiaâ€™s vision to become one of the four deepwater hubs in the world by better serving and offering sound advice to clients involved in the O&G sector and related activities.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had said at the opening of Asiaflex Products plant in Tanjung Langsat in Pasir Gudang last week that Malaysia would join Houston, Rio de Janeiro and Europe as the worldâ€™s deepwater hubs.
Founded in 1828, and headquartered in Paris, Bureau Veritasâ€™ core business is conformity assessment. It set up its regional office in Kuala Lumpur in 1987.
The companyâ€™s services include helping companies verify the different steps in building construction, test materials or consumer goods, survey ships and review offshore construction plans, control the environmental impact of an industrial plant, inspect goods in a port before shipment and certify products or systems.
Meanwhile, Bureau Veritas (M) Sdn Bhd chief executive Othman Abdul Kadir said Johor offered good opportunities in the conformity-assessment business.
He said the opportunities would come from the upcoming regional O&G hub in Johorâ€™s southeast areas of Teluk Ramunia-Pengerang and Iskandar Malaysiaâ€™s Eastern Gate and Western Gate Development Zones.
The Eastern Gate in Pasir Gudang-Tanjung Langsat would be developed into a petrochemical hub and also fabrication for deepwater activities while the Western Gate would be turned into an oil field services and equipment centre.
â€œMany players, including foreign companies, in the O&G industry and related activities have already set up their operations in Iskandar,â€ said Othman.
However, he declined to comment when asked whether O&G exploration activities could take place along the Johor coastline of Teluk Ramunia and Pengerang.