An Introduction to the Regulation of the Petroleum Industry

Article excerpt

An Introduction to the Regulation of the Petroleum Industry, by Bernard Taverne. London, United Kingdom: Graham & Trotman/Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 1994. Pp. 246. $105.00 (hardcover).

An Introduction to the Regulation of the Petroleum Industry provides an in-depth examination of national laws and regulations, licenses, commercial agreements, and global and regional conventions concerning the international petroleum industry. The book was primarily written for geologists or engineers in charge of petroleum ventures, but it also provides background knowledge for consultants who must work with the regulatory and cooperative aspects of petroleum operations. The book is divided into six chapters, including an introduction, each of which deals with a different aspect of the petroleum industry. Where relevant, the author has included a discussion of petroleum taxation issues that apply to the subject matter of the chapter.

The book begins by analyzing some of the general aspects of petroleum and the petroleum industry. It examines the natural formation of petroleum in its varying states, the geographical spread of crude-oil and natural-gas reserves, and the importance to national governments of having access to oil reserves. The book explains how this need for petroleum has a large influence upon the regulation of petroleum-related activities.

The second chapter reviews some of the general principles of petroleum legislation. The chapter begins with the primary objectives, structure, and content common to most petroleum laws and regulations. The chapter then discusses licenses and contracts of work, the two elements that are common to all petroleum regulatory regimes. The book explains the major types of licenses and contracts of work, their scope, and any special conditions that may be included within them.

The third chapter provides an overview of influential past and present petroleum legislation. The chapter begins by discussing the concession agreements negotiated between the governments of Arab Gulf states and major international oil companies. The book uses examples of past agreements to describe some of the common provisions of traditional concessions. The book then discusses petroleum legislation in the United Kingdom, Norway, and The Netherlands. The author uses these three countries as examples because all three have recently developed legislation for petroleum operations, and the legislation is widely considered to be a model for the field. …