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23

OPEC bulletin 5–7/17

C o n f e r e n c e N o t e s

Resources of Saudi Arabia, and President of the OPEC

Conference in his opening remarks.

“The consultations and diplomacy efforts that led to

this began during 2016. They were unparalleled in the

history of OPEC.”

Al-Falih discussed the process behind the talks lead-

ing to the successful OPEC and non-OPEC decisions. He

also described the feeling of urgency that had spurred

all participants on, noting that the talks represented a

new chapter in OPEC and non-OPEC relations. Since the

‘Declaration of Cooperation’ was signed some positive

indicators had returned to the market but important

issues remain.

The Secretary General of OPEC, Mohammad Sanusi

Barkindo, also saw the gala dinner as a good opportunity

for all in attendance. It is a chance to “sit back, take stock

and acknowledge the collective will and heroic efforts of

all 24 countries in the ‘Declaration of Cooperation’,” he

said.

He highly praised both the previous President of

the Conference, Mohammed Bin Saleh Al-Sada, Qatar’s

Minister of Energy and Industry, and Al-Falih, the cur-

rent President. Al-Sada’s unwavering focus on the mis-

sion and destination of the group “despite often stormy

waters” was a cornerstone in the historical achieve-

ments, Barkindo said. “Mohammad Al-Sada never gave

up. He remained optimistic, even given the prospect of

despair.”

Barkindo said

that Minister Al-Falih

assumed the OPEC

Presidency at the

c o mm e n c e m e n t

of these landmark

decisions and with

a new framework

that had yet to be

tested. He lauded

Al-Falih’s previ-

ous work as Saudi

Aramco’s President and

CEO prior to taking up

his post as Energy

Minister. “In his five-

and-a-half year tenure

as the head of the

largest energy com-

pany in the world,”

s a i d Ba r k i n d o ,

“[Al-Falih] led the compa-

ny’s transformation from an oil and gas company

to a fully integrated energy and chemicals enterprise.”

Barkindo added that Al-Falih has been a major con-

tributor and actor in the OPEC and non-OPEC decisions

that had been taken. “As Conference President, he has