Sarawak Energy Senior Leadership Appointments: Group Chief Executive Officer

KUCHING, TUESDAY, 16th AUGUST 2016: Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit, Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) has elected to leave the company after his present contract expires at the end of October to return to his home country of Norway.

Effective 1st November 2016, Mr. Sharbini Suhaili, currently PETRONAS Group Vice President for Health, Safety, Security & Environment (HSSE), will be the new CEO.

Sarawak Energy Chairman Datuk Amar Abdul Hamed Sepawi said, "When Datuk Torstein informed us of his decision in 2015, we were saddened but it is a decision we must respect. I also informed the State Government and the Chief Minister who were surprised and saddened to hear that Torstein did not wish to renew his contract, but respected his intention to leave." 

“Over the last seven years, he has overseen a period of tremendous growth and transformed Sarawak Energy into the dynamic organisation of today with international visibility and credibility. We will always be grateful for his contribution to the growth and development of the company and its people, both in Sarawak and beyond.” 

“Of particular note is his focus on talent development and capacity building – Sarawak Energy has grown from 2,800 to 4,500 staff, most in skilled professional positions.”

“The focus on renewable hydropower generation under SCORE and the consequential lowering of costs has resulted in customers in Sarawak enjoying the lowest domestic, commercial and industrial tariffs in the country due to the lower generation costs. We also take pride in the associated 60 percent reduction in the company’s carbon intensity,” he said.

In addition to continuing to meet its commitment to supply reliable power to domestic consumers in the state, Sarawak Energy also sells bulk power to SCORE and export customers as part of its transformation. 

Local and foreign energy intensive investors have set up plants in Sarawak, attracted by the competitive prices for energy marketed by the power company. It is estimated some 20,000 direct and indirect jobs have been created as a result.

Sarawak Energy is also the pioneer exporter of electricity in Malaysia, with the first export to West Kalimantan early this year, and is progressing agreements to supply to Brunei and Sabah. The company signed an agreement this year to provide technical expertise and consultancy services for the development of North Kalimantan’s power sector. 

Datuk Torstein was recruited by the State government, joining the wholly-government owned company in 2009. His decision to leave was communicated to the Board and State last year. Since then, he has been actively assisting the Board in the search for a suitable replacement.

"The decision to leave was made after long and careful consideration with my family in Norway.  It has been a tremendous privilege for me to lead the 4,500 Sarawakians at Sarawak Energy for the past seven years,' said Torstein.

"We are all proud of what has already been achieved and excited about what is still to come.  I thank the Board and the State Government for the trust given to me to lead Sarawak Energy in my 7 years with the company.  My gratitude also to my Sarawak Energy team for the trust, hard work and dedication at every level,” he concluded.

For his many contributions to the State, Datuk Torstein was awarded the Pingat Panglima Bintang Kenyalang by the Governor of Sarawak in 2013.

Datuk Amar Hamed said, “We are also grateful for Torstein’s commitment in the search for a successor who can continue to build on his legacy of growth. Sharbini has both national and international credentials, and the necessary experience to bring the company to the next level.”

Sharbini Suhaili is a Sarawakian from Kuching and has extensive national and overseas experience in the oil and gas industry with both Shell and PETRONAS.

He began his career with Royal Dutch Shell in 1986 as a pipeline engineer, and held various positions in the company in Malaysia and overseas, including senior roles in commercial, planning, strategy and business development. 

He was general manager of Shell Malaysia's Sabah upstream operations and headed their non-operated joint-ventures before joining PETRONAS in 2010 as vice president of International Production for their upstream arm.

In his previous role as Vice President of Upstream International, he was responsible for the growth of the petroleum company’s international business before taking over the HSSE role.

Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit

Datuk Torstein with Sarawak Energy management team