We are seeing a lot of activities coming up in the drilling subsector, which will surely be sustained for years to come.


A re-energised oil and gas sector

June 1, 2023

Fadi Kardahji, vice-president of International Inspection Centre Company, talks to The Energy Year about how the company has remained competitive in the market for the last four decades and the new opportunities as activity ramps up in Kuwait’s oil and gas sector. International Inspection Centre Company provides inspections and training for all levels of the nation’s energy industry.

What major projects has International Inspection Centre Company recently worked on?
From 2017 to 2020, we successfully performed the role of the main inspection contractor on clean fuel projects for all companies involved in the project execution, including CCC [Consolidated Contractors Company], Petrofac and Samsung. We had the manpower and infrastructure to work with all contractors simultaneously. This was in addition to working directly with Técnicas Reunidas and Sinopec at the Al Zour Refinery. Apart from this, we continue providing specialised manpower and NDT services to Chevron in their joint operation project at Wafra.
We have a contract for a project with KOC that we signed in July 2022 for four years. The contract is worth around USD 10 million. The activities include comprehensively testing all their gathering centres, the excavation of pipes, testing insulation and isometrics. We perform all types of tests for the gathering centres progressively; moving from one working station to another.
A new department for training was launched during the first quarter of 2021 to cater to the mandatory training requirements in the construction field and oil and gas sector. Approved by KPC for all companies in the sector, we are now equipped to provide training in diverse areas ranging from safety driving to scaffolding and personnel safety.


What makes the company unique compared to its competition?
We have invested a considerable amount of money to introduce and develop new technologies, some of which are rare in Kuwait. We have invested hundreds of thousands of Kuwaiti dinars into the market in the hopes of gaining an upper hand in the market. This, of course, energises us to focus on our specialty services, not only in Kuwait but also in the Middle East. The advanced and conventional NDT technologies we introduce are one of the many examples of this.
Another strategic advantage we have is that we are a self-financed organisation. This provides more freedom to venture into new realms of research and investment in user-friendly and cost-efficient technologies. Unlike other inspection companies in Kuwait, we are independent, focusing exclusively on diverse inspection activities. We seldom function as a subdivision or subsidiary of any construction firm. Hence, we understand how crucial it is to invest in and introduce advanced technologies for our business operations.
Quality is our policy, and no compromise shall be made in maintaining the quality standards in any situation. We maintain the quality of services by being selective in resourcing manpower, updating our know-how and closely monitoring the performance of employees and execution of activities. This contributes a lot to remaining in the market as a unique operation.

Where do you see the most opportunity for contractors in Kuwait’s oil and gas sector?
The Al Zour petrochemicals complex will be a huge undertaking. KOC’s effluent projects are also big-budget enterprises. Around KWD 5 billion [USD 16.1 billion] in projects were supposed to be announced in 2021 in this arena but were delayed.
The Covid-19 pandemic situation adversely affected the oil and gas sector. However, with the hike in oil prices, we are seeing a lot of activities coming up in the drilling subsector, which will surely be sustained for years to come. Our main focus is to invest in novel technologies, which we want to introduce into Kuwait’s market. There are restrictions to disclosing them now, as they are patented technologies. We are confident that these will help us continue to be ahead of everyone else in this stream of business.

What plans do you have for the company in the next decade?
We have been active in the market for 42 years, watching its ups and downs. Kuwait provides oil and gas, which will remain a required commodity for the world for the coming 10 years. Kuwait floats on a lake of oil. It is mandatory for KOC to carry out expansion projects to raise their production to the tune of 4 million bopd. The market is promising. Being an essential service provider in the oil and gas sector specialising in inspections, the market is promising for us, too.
Of course, there are challenges ahead. In order to pursue success with the mounting demands of the market, we have to move forward with our new initiatives, modernise our equipment, educate and train our personnel in new technologies and continue achieving the heights of international standards. We provide a service that is essential to the market, whether in petrochemicals, in the oil and gas sector, in power plants or elsewhere. We have the right vision, the right workforce, the right equipment and we rightly invest every year to be on the right track for business success.

Read our latest insights on: