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DECC encourages all parties to follow the voluntary industry code of practice on access to upstream oil and gas infrastructure. The Infrastructure Code of Practice sets out principles and procedures for negotiating third party access to oil and gas infrastructure on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS).

You can download the Infrastructure Code of Practice and other helpful guidance from the guidance menu on the right-hand side of this page.



Guidance on upstream oil and gas infrastructure access dispute resolution

Access for developers of offshore oil and gas fields to upstream infrastructure for the purpose of transporting and processing hydrocarbons is a key element in the process of extracting the UK's petroleum resources. Companies seeking access for their hydrocarbons to such infrastructure must apply in the first instance to the relevant owner of the infrastructure in question.

If a third party is unable to agree satisfactory terms of access with the owner of the upstream oil and gas infrastructure, the third party seeking such access can – and under the terms of the Infrastructure Code of Practice may be obliged to – make an application to the Secretary of State to require access to be granted and to determine the terms on which it is to be granted.

DECC's Guidance on disputes over third-party access to upstream oil and gas infrastructure, accessible via the link at the right, sets out the requirements and obligations on all parties, the approach the Department would take in handling applications, and the principles the Department would expect to be guided by in determining terms of access.

The current Guidance reflects the third party access provisions of the Energy Act 2011 which came into force on 21 March 2012. DECC will review the Guidance in the light of industry comments and the updating of the Infrastructure Code of Practice that is currently in progress. It is expected that DECC's Guidance will be revised if necessary by the end of 2012.

Comments on the Guidance are welcomed. It would be helpful if any proposals for changes include, wherever possible, both reasons and suggestions for all general enquireis to:

Robert White
0300 068 6056


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