Programme Paper

Associate Fellow, Energy, Environment and Resources
Additional author info: 


The aim of these Guidelines is to promote effective decisions about the structure and rules of the petroleum sector in a context of low institutional and sector capacity. They offer recommendations for emerging producers, drawn from a workshop that brought together new and established producers, as well as technical advisory groups active in these countries. The recommendations address the following issues:

  • How do emerging producers attract established companies to a frontier area? What type of licensing and contracts is most appropriate in these cases?
  • Emerging producers face the challenge of winning the trust of the public, especially in post- conflict situations and where corruption has been endemic. And once discoveries have been made, it can be difficult to moderate public expectations. Public consultations and education are keys to addressing this issue. 
  • Emerging producers want to maximize local content and benefits to the broader economy, but they have to set realistic local content targets when domestic industrial or human capacity is low.
  • In emerging oil hotspots, there is a growing interest in promoting national participation, largely through stakes for countries' NOCs. From Ghana to Timor-Leste, many new or prospective oil producers are establishing or reforming NOCs. The key questions that emerge in this context are: 1) whether and when it is appropriate to create an NOC; and 2) what role the NOC (and other governing bodies) should have. In other words, can the state afford to build up an NOC that’s an operator? Does it have the capacity to build up an independent regulator?
  • Producers at an early stage of development of their resource base can start with one credible body that is responsible for all administrative and regulatory functions. Over time, governments will need to build up capacity elsewhere and introduce checks and balances into the system.


Our interactive presentation and training tool takes you through the policy objectives and recommendations of the Guidelines for Good Governance in Emerging Oil and Gas Producers.