The exploration and production upstream sector has adjusted to the oil price collapse of 1986 and has entered the new decade with a rationalised and restructured business portfolio. There has been a considerable drive to reduce cost and consolidate the business around the core activities, with increasing emphasis being placed on the maintenance contribution to the business objectives.

The prime role of maintenance is accountability for management of the safeguarding of technical integrity, and ensuring the required long term facility availability at optimum cash flow.

The oil industry entered the new decade having gained valuable lessons from the turbulent experiences of the later 80s period, demonstrating an ability to adapt and be sensitive to the need to "manage change"

There is now a growing realisation that a number of issues need to be addressed, in order to safeguard the long term technical integrity of assets.

This activity is made the more challenging by the number of facilities approaching design half-life, and the ever changing demands in production profile necessary to gain further commercial advantage.

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