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OSCE seminar addresses protection of oil and gas infrastructure from hazards in Turkmenistan

Management approaches and tools aimed at protecting oil and gas infrastructure from natural or human-made hazards was the topic of an OSCE-organized online seminar that took place on 26 and 27 November 2020.

“Disaster risk reduction, including reduction of its destructive effect on strategically important infrastructure sites, represents a critically important aspect of international co-operation,” said Natalya Drozd, Head of the OSCE Centre in Ashgabat.

The two-day event brought together representatives of the Main Department of Civil Defence and Rescue Operations of Turkmenistan’s Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Healthcare and Medical Industry, as well as law-enforcement bodies, oil and gas agencies and other relevant institutions.

The seminar familiarized participants with international standards and best practices on assessing possible risks and developing effective preventive and response measures to hazards in the oil and gas sector.

It also provided an overview of regulations for environmental protection during construction of oil and gas wells and of international standards related to safety during extraction and processing of natural resources.

International experts facilitated discussions on the implementation of mechanisms aimed at protecting oil and gas infrastructure and promoting energy security. They also shared experiences in risk management related to extraction, production, storage and transportation of oil and gas as well as measures to prevent and respond to emergencies caused by accidents related to oil and gas infrastructure.

Measures to protect critical infrastructure from cyberattacks and to protect the digital future of the oil and gas sector were among the topics discussed. A representative of the Office of the Co-coordinator of OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities also presented the OSCE’s information platform, ‘Critical energy infrastructure’, which facilitates collaboration on topics across participating States.

“Our seminar demonstrated the importance of promoting co-operation and building trust among participating States, both at interstate and interagency levels,” said Drozd. “Partnerships within the OSCE, the world’s largest regional security co-operation organization, have the vast potential to counter these evolving threats and help protect the oil and gas sector from hazards.”

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