The Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) has been established as an independent government company by the UK Government. This formalises the transfer of the Secretary of State’s regulatory powers in respect of oil and gas to the OGA, and grants it new powers.

The OGA’s new powers include dispute resolution, meetings access and sanctions. Detailed information has been published on the OGA’s website to clearly outline obligations and issue guidance on how it intends to use these to support industry, promote good practice and facilitate action. In addition, the OGA now has a remit to work with industry to ensure cost-effective decommissioning.

Andy Samuel, Chief Executive of the OGA, said: “We have been in action since day one, supporting industry to deliver our shared objective of maximising the economic recovery of oil and gas. Industry has made great strides to increase production, efficiency and collaboration, recognising the need to compete for investment in a global market.

“Today marks a new chapter for the OGA. All the good work will carry on as we regulate, influence and promote the oil and gas sector, working closely with industry and government. We will use our new powers strategically to help maximise economic recovery and increase collaboration, transparency and pace of delivery. We are committed to helping industry capitalise on the potential 20 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe) that remain. 

UK Government Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark said: “We have a world leading oil and gas industry in the UK that we are extremely proud of, and establishing an independent regulator shows that we are listening to what the industry needs.

“As a Government Company the Oil and Gas Authority will have the powers it needs to be a strong, independent regulator and act with greater speed and flexibility to attract investment, support jobs and ensure that UK oil and gas remains a major player on the world stage.”



For more information please contact:   

Leona Minellas
Press and Media Advisor
Oil & Gas Authority
Tel: +44 (0) 300 020 1072

Notes to editors:

  • OGA’s new powers encompass: Dispute resolution; meetings; sanctions (including; warning notice, enforcement notice, financial penalty up to £1 million, operator removal, licence revocation) and information and samples (to come into force)
  • The OGA has committed to consult with industry prior to actively exercising certain other powers regarding financial penalties and information and samples
  • More information and guidelines on how the OGA will use its powers can be found on the OGA’s new website which also launched today, 3 October 2016
  • The UK Government reacted quickly to create the OGA. The Energy Bill, introduced to the House of Lords on 9 July 2015 and passed as an Act in May 2016, formally established the OGA as an independent regulator
  • The Infrastructure Act 2015 put into statute the principle of maximising the economic recovery of the UK’s oil and gas resources (MER UK). The final MER UK Strategy was laid before parliament and came into force in March 2016.
  • Decisions previously held by ministers. including exploration and production decisions and approvals, are now held by the OGA Chief Executive, Andy Samuel.
  • The OGA will hold a full-day event, ‘MER UK in Practice’, where it will set out how the OGA regulates, influences and promotes the UK Continental Shelf to maximise economic recovery. The event will take place on 25th October 2016 at Aberdeen Exhibition Conference Centre.