THE State Legislative Assembly (DUN) today passed the Oil Mining (Amendment) Bill, 2018, paving way for the state to strengthen its regulatory control over the exploration and prospecting for petroleum, which by definition includes natural gas.
Some 13 elected representatives from both sides of the political divide took part in the debate of the Bill.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan in his winding up speech before the Bill was passed thanked the honourable members and hoped the consensus would help the state in regulating the oil and gas industry in the state
“With the strengthening of our regulatory framework, the state would be in a far better position to ensure participation by Sarawak in hs oil and gas industry,” Awang Tengah, who is also Minister of Industrial and Entrepreneur Development told the august House.
He also said the Sarawak government has decided to give a grace period of up to end of next year for the existing industry players to comply and regularise with the Oil Mining Ordinance (OMO) 1958.
“What is important now is that the state is now taking steps to ensure that all parties take necessary action to align their operation within the ambit of the state law.
He pointed out that the state has conducted an engagement with all industry players since May 16 this year, where all necessary information and direction have been given to those involved in the oil and gas industry, including Petronas.
“We can assure that this august House that if a real need were to arise, the necessary amendments would be made to increase the penalties.”