Offshore Catering

OPEC’s Projections and Their Impact on Offshore Catering Services

OPEC's Projections and Their Impact on Offshore Catering Services

The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has a significant influence on global oil markets. OPEC’s production projections not only affect the oil and gas industry but also ancillary services like offshore catering.

Offshore catering services are integral to the operation of offshore oil and gas platforms. They provide essential services such as food and beverage supply, galley equipment and design, and accommodation cleaning. 

So, any fluctuations in offshore O&G activities directly impact the demand for these services. As OPEC’s projections often guide the pace of these activities, it’s crucial to understand their potential implications. 

OPEC’s Outlook

OPEC is an intergovernmental organisation conceptualised in 1960 to expressly coordinate the petroleum policies of its member countries. It constitutes 13 major oil-exporting nations, including Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela, among others. 

OPEC’s decisions and policies have far-reaching effects on the oil sector— making it a key player within the global energy landscape. Through its coordination of petroleum policies amongst member countries, OPEC possesses the power to impact oil prices, production levels, and market stability worldwide. 

OPEC recently outlined its projections for the global oil industry for the year 2045. These forecasts are pivotal for understanding the future trends within the oil and gas domain, and they have particular relevance for offshore exploration and development.

According to OPEC’s latest outlook: 

  • The global population is expected to expand by around 1.5 billion from nearly eight billion in 2022 to about 9.5 billion by 2045. This will be driven by strong population growth in the Middle East & Africa and Other Asia. 
  • Global primary energy demand is set to increase from around 291 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (mboe/d) in 2022 to close to 359 mboe/d in 2045, an increase of 68.3 mboe/d, or 23% over the outlook period
  • In the long term, global oil demand is expected to increase by more than 16 mb/d between 2022 and 2045, rising from 99.6 mb/d in 2022 to 116 mb/d in 2045.
  • Investment requirements for the overall oil sector, between 2022 and 2045, are estimated at a cumulative $14 trillion (in 2023 $US), or around $610 billion p.a. on average.
  • This increase in demand could potentially spur a surge in offshore oil exploration and production activities, particularly in the Middle East— a region with a significant concentration of OPEC member countries. 

Source: OPEC World Oil Outlook 2045

Source OPEC 

With the Middle East holding a substantial portion of the world’s proven oil reserves, OPEC’s optimistic outlook spells enhanced production levels and economic prosperity. Thereby, reinforcing the region’s importance in meeting global energy demands and shaping the future of the industry.

Relationship between offshore O&G activities and the demand for offshore catering services

The dynamics of offshore oil and gas activities directly influence the demand for offshore catering services. An increase in oil production and exploration typically translates into higher demand for these supporting services. 

Let’s contextualise this further, shall we?

Increased oil production

Should OPEC’s forecasts signal a boom in offshore projects, we can expect a corresponding surge in demand for catering services. 

Expansions in exploration and development activities mean more personnel stationed on offshore rigs— translating to increased requirements for sustenance.

Stagnant or reduced production

Conversely, if projections indicate stagnant or reduced production levels, a potential slowdown in offshore activity looms. 

This scenario necessitates cautious evaluation by offshore catering companies. This is because fewer projects would mean fewer workers on offshore platforms— and, consequently, less need for catering services.

Actionable strategies for offshore caterers

In light of the potential shifts in this market triggered by OPEC’s projections, offshore catering companies must implement strategic measures to navigate these changes effectively. For example:


One viable strategy is diversification. As the global energy sector gradually transitions towards renewable sources, offshore catering companies can explore opportunities beyond traditional oil and gas platforms.

For instance, catering services could be extended to offshore renewable energy projects, like wind farms.

Cost optimisation

Efficiency is the name of the game in maintaining competitiveness. Streamlining operations and optimising costs enables catering companies to weather market fluctuations whilst still delivering quality services.


Innovation remains a cornerstone of success. By offering unique and value-added services, such as culturally tailored menus for Middle Eastern oil and gas rigs, catering companies can distinguish themselves in a crowded market. 

In fact, offering a variety of authentic Middle Eastern dishes may contribute to a sense of comfort and familiarity for workers from the region. It could, thereby, promote employee satisfaction whilst fostering a sense of inclusivity and appreciation for cultural diversity. 

Also read: Saudi Arabia: Upcoming Opportunities for Offshore Caterers

Building partnerships

Collaborating with offshore reefer container companies presents unique opportunities for offshore caterers. For example, opportunities for advanced shipping options for perishable goods. 

Generally, establishing strategic partnerships enhances logistical capabilities, ensuring timely delivery of food supplies to offshore installations. 

The need for advanced offshore reefer containers

Central to maintaining offshore catering for the oil and gas sector is the utilisation of advanced offshore reefer containers like the Ice Wave and Ice Storm

MGS Offshore Reefer Containers R1

Such reefers maintain advanced features such as automated temperature control, ventilation management, and real-time GPS location tracking. These features play a pivotal role in sustaining the quality of perishable food products used by offshore caterers.  

For context, remote temperature control ensures that perishable food items are stored at optimal temperatures. Thus, preserving their freshness and quality during transportation to offshore rigs. 

Ventilation control helps iteratively regulate air circulation within the containers. Thereby, preventing the buildup of odours and maintaining a conducive environment for food storage. 

Overall, these features collectively contribute to food safety,  which is crucial for meeting the dietary needs of offshore workers in the Oil & Gas sector. Thus, adhering to strict quality and safety standards in catering operations.


OPEC’s projections will undeniably shape the landscape of offshore catering services in the Middle East and beyond. While these projections pose challenges, they also present opportunities for growth and innovation. 

Offshore catering companies that are adaptable, innovative, and strategic in their approach will be best positioned to thrive in this changing landscape. Despite some uncertainties, the future of offshore catering in the Middle East looks promising, with ample opportunities for those ready to seize it.

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