Senior solicitor Chris Dann, solicitor Ruth Loan and partner Brigid McArthur are advising the Ministry of Economic Development on its project to fulfil New Zealand’s international treaty obligations, as a member of the International Energy Agency (IEA), by contracting with various international oil companies to hold petroleum reserves on behalf of the Crown and provide the Crown with an option to purchase petroleum in the event of an oil supply emergency.
The firm’s role has included designing the global RFP and tendering process, analysing RFPs and tenders through two tender rounds and negotiating and drawing up commercial contracts with tenderers based in Australia, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Japan. It has also advised the Ministry on the process (and documentation) for the purchase and on-sale of petroleum stocks.
As a member of the IEA, New Zealand is required to hold at least 90 days of oil reserves (measured as net imports). New Zealand’s stock levels have recently been as low as 60 days of net oil imports as a result of increasing demand and declining domestic production. The success of this project has enabled New Zealand to maintain its membership of the IEA, meet the 90 days reserve obligation and enhance security of supply of oil in the event of a global supply emergency.