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Oil & Gas Sector

"The sector is in a position to show leadership on a range of transparency and accountability issues... and we work actively to promote engagement."

The oil and gas sector is enormously important for Myanmar's development. It's a sector with more than 100 years of history here and a potentially bright future with high gas prospectivity.

The industry can offer large national benefits including cash from energy sales, providing a flexible energy source and skills for workers that are useful in many industries. Recent sector developments include:

  • Tendering processes on 36 onshore and offshore blocks
  • The industry involved as a key player in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) implementation
  • A significantly expanded number of 'super-major" international oil and gas companies
  • The completion of the first sector-wide impact assessment for the industry.

Due to the operational approaches and engagement models used in the past, public trust in the industry remains quite low. In addition, lack of transparency and lack of flow through of benefits to citizens has created peace and equity perception issues.

National expectations on the oil and gas industry are enormous. In general it seems that much more transparency, more information, and active communication is needed by affected communities and between stakeholders. For example:

  • With EITI regional and national working groups
  • Broader focus on community inputs, considered from national context
  • Careful focus on harm and equity and attention to rights, consent and compensation issues.

Spectrum's opinion and the opinion of our partners is that a much more proactive approach to engagement, issues of contract transparency and beneficial ownership are needed to make up for lost ground in the past. The oil and gas sector is in a position to show leadership on a range of transparency and accountability issues. We work actively to promote engagement and assist sector development to be a national success.

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