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PDO faces ‘perfect storm’ amid oil price shock, COVID-19 crisis

27 Apr 2020

Petroleum Development Oman (PDO), the sultanate’s largest hydrocarbons producer, is facing a ‘perfect storm’ of circumstances as the world economy is facing unprecedented challenges from the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Along with the oil price collapse, faltering demand, funding constraints and employment challenges, we are facing a ‘perfect storm’ of circumstances which will test our resolve to the full,” PDO’s managing director Raoul Restucci said in his message in the company’s monthly Al Fahal newsletter for April.

He said the world is facing unprecedented challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, adding, “Like other countries, Oman has not escaped the disease’s impact but His Majesty’s government has acted quickly to contain it with a raft of comprehensive and wide-ranging measures.”

As the major oil and gas producer in the country, PDO wholeheartedly supports this approach and introduced company-wide moves to safeguard the welfare of its staff and contractors and the continuity of the business operations, Restucci said.

“We have adopted new work patterns to limit our exposure to the virus and control its transmission as much as possible. Our staff and contractors, both at the coast and those in the interior, are performing heroically. Our main priorities are protecting the safety and well-being of our people and their loved ones and ensuring we continue to generate the revenue to sustain the nation,” he added.

Speaking at the latest Al Hewar engagement session, as reported in Al Fahal newsletter, Restucci said COVID-19, the slump in oil and gas prices, and funding and employment challenges meant all staff and contractors needed to pull together.

He added, “I cannot recall a time throughout my career that society at large has been confronted with a ‘perfect storm’ and that is an understatement. Not only within the context of Oman, but across the world.”

The Al Hewar session was the first to take place fully online because of the large number of PDO staff working from home. The session heard that the key priorities were aimed at keeping staff and contractors safe, ensuring oil and gas continued to flow and minimising, where possible, the business impact, according to Al Fahal newsletter.

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