OPEC bulletin 2/18
platform upon which many other sectors operate. Facilitated by the
well-known Becky Anderson, Managing Editor and Anchor at CNN
Abu Dhabi, and the Atlantic Council’s President and CEO, Frederick
Kempe, the session explored how such electrification can play out
in different countries and what the implications might be for energy
security and governance. The keynote for that session was given by
Fatih Birol, whowas joined byMinister Mazrouei and Dr Thani Ahmed
Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment of the UAE.
There were also sessions on industry “best practices and
business models”, nuclear energy and even a country-focused
session on the future of the oil and gas sector of Iraq. The coun-
try, which has been struggling to get back to former levels of
production and stability, has taken important steps to increase
its oil production despite many challenges. Several prominent
Iraqi officials served on the panel, including Luay Al Khateeb,
Executive Director of the Iraq Energy Institute, and Jabbar Ali
Hussein Al-Luiebi, Minister of Oil of the Republic of Iraq. The
consensus was that with the right support and partnerships
continuing, the country could once more play a huge role in gas
and oil — and in securing a more stable and prosperous energy
future. Already there has been progress: “The industry is moving
very fast and the country is now nearing production capacity of
five million barrels per day,” Al-Luiebi said.
Separately, Majid Jafar, CEO of Crescent Petroleum, one of the
oldest private oil and gas companies in the Middle East, said his
UAE-based company has already invested close to $2.5 billion in
Iraq in the last decade — half of it in oil and gas — from the north-
ern regions to the port of Basra in the south. He also noted the
country remains vastly underexplored and that only a few thousand
wells have been drilled in the country’s entire history, compared
to ten times that much in nearby Saudi Arabia and well over a mil-
lion wells in the state of Texas. “Over 300 oil structures in Iraq’s
Western Desert have never even been drilled,” he noted.
A borderless think tank
The Global Energy Forum closed on Saturday night with a Leaders
Council Dinner under the theme ‘Energy investment and diversifi-
cation strategies’. The dinner, which was by invitation only, brought
together the top leaders of the energy world for additional fellow-
ship, and frank and open discussions about some of the biggest
challenges facing exploration, production, transportation, the envi-
ronment, public policies, technology and investments.
For those who attended, it was an opportunity to really exchange
ideas and perspectives with people whomight otherwise be limited
by their academic profiles or their professional obligations. To not
only share experiences but to compare notes from the field, while
also bringing to bear the unique analytical perspectives of some
of the smartest people in the industry, in government, and in aca-
demia, is a rare treat.
In this, the Atlantic Council seems to outperform so many other
organizations and, with the Global Energy Forum, it seems to have
carved out for itself a unique place as a kind of roving think tank.
Though based inWashington, DC, it functions as an intellectual clear-
inghouse — a borderless think tank — bringing together all relevant
actors for an intense two days. May it continue to prosper.
for a group
the 2018 Global