The Oil for Development programme in Myanmar

Myanmar is one of the world’s oldest oil producers, with production dating back to the 19th century. Natural gas comprises 90 per cent of the total production.
Norway and Myanmar finalised a five-year programme document in 2017. An OfD Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Norway and Myanmar (2017–2022) was signed by the Norwegian Embassy in Yangon and the Ministry of Planning, Finance and Industry (MOPFI) in May 2017, after which institutional cooperation agreements were signed between the relevant institutions in Norway and Myanmar.

Key achievements of programme activities

Enhanced legal and regulatory framework

  • The Government of Myanmar has been revising the model Production Sharing Contract in preparation for a new licensing round (work still ongoing) based on comments and input from, among others, OfD experts.

  • The Government of Myanmar has submitted a new upstream petroleum law to parliament.

Increased institutional capacity

  • The Ministry of Electricity and Energy (MOEE) and MOPFI have jointly developed capacity to undertake five year petroleum revenue forecasts after receiving training from OfD and the World Bank (through a joint project).

  • MOEE has participated in workshops organised by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate and as a result has increased its capacity to conduct resource assessments and manage field development plans.

  • MOPFI’s Large Taxpayers’ Office has been working together with an OfD audit expert and has conducted several petroleum tax audits, which have resulted in additional claims and potential additional tax revenues for the Government.

  • The Department of Marine Administration in the Ministry of Transport and Communication has increased its capacity in the field of oil spill response and started a programme for sensitivity mapping after participating in several table-top exercises together with the Norwegian Coastal Administration.

  • MOEE has increased understanding of how to conduct audits and inspections of pipelines through training and fieldtrips together with the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway.
  • With the assistance of the Norwegian Environmental Agency (NEA), the Environmental Conservation Department (ECD) in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation has assessed Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) and issued environmental compliance certificates (the EIA backlog has been cleared).

  • ECD has increased its capacity to conduct audits through a trial audit conducted together with NEA.

  • ECD has started developing various environmental datasets in collaboration with NEA.
  • Safety awareness increased in MOEE and MOGE through field trips and seminars.

Increased transparency and accountability

  • The Government’s budget documents to parliament contain more detailed information than before about the oil and gas sector, including disaggregated figures on types of revenue, revenues from various petroleum fields and revenues from upstream and transportation respectively. These changes are a direct result of Norad’s consultants sharing international best practice with MOPFI.

  • OfD experts and civil society partners Global Witness, NRGI and Norwegian People’s Aid supported the leading Civil Society Organisation (CSO) coalition Myanmar Alliance for Transparency and Accountability (MATA) in engaging effectively in the EITI process by providing technical assistance and capacity development, including on beneficial ownership disclosures. Beneficial ownership disclosures were made legally binding in 2019, in line with the EITI requirements.
Published 02.07.2014
Last updated 22.10.2020