GCC states must add value to oil wealth: Kuwaiti business leader

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GCC – GCC states must increase their investment in value-added oil and gas processing to support sustainable, long-term economic growth, one of Kuwait’s leading industry executives said today.

Speaking at the preparations for world’s largest annual meeting of senior oil and gas executives, the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (ADIPEC), EQUATE President & CEO Mohammad Husain said better integration of upstream, midstream and downstream sectors of the industry must be a priority for national oil companies (NOCs).

This would ensure that countries with significant oil reserves continued to receive greatest possible benefit from their natural resource.

“Historically, downstream industries in the Gulf have been relatively underdeveloped,” Husain said. “Exports from the region were generally crude oil, with value adding taking place outside regional economy. However, over the last two decades, the region has emerged as a global hub for production of chemicals and petrochemicals, and the industry has been on a consistent and exponential expansion drive, growing at an average compound annual growth rate of 12%..

“As the global market for oil, gas and petrochemicals further evolves, we need to bring more of processed value of petroleum products within our own economy as means for greater diversification and industrial presence. This has become a high priority for Gulf NOCs.”

ADIPEC 2017 will, for the first time, include dedicated conference and exhibition sections for downstream industries, reflecting their increasing strategic importance to Middle East NOCs wanting to maximise income across the value chain.

Mohammed Husain will represent the EQUATE Group, a global petrochemicals enterprise headquartered in Kuwait, on a series of four Downstream Global Leader panel discussions, alongside senior executives from companies including Nova Chemicals, Petronas, Borealis, BP, Pak Arab Refinery, Cepsa and Total. There will also be dedicated technical sessions for professionals in downstream fields.

“The expansion of ADIPEC to include downstream sector is very welcome,” said Husain. “Countries in this region similar challenges, and we must work together in partnership to ensure that our hydrocarbon wealth creates sustainable social and economic benefits for future generations.”

“The NOCs that we host at ADIPEC are all pivoting towards downstream sector as a strategy to maximise their return on their crude oil operations, and ADIPEC is committed to supporting and driving that transition,” said Ali Khalifa Al Shamsi, CEO of Al Yasat Petroleum Operations Company and ADIPEC 2017 Chairman. “For Middle East countries, investment within the region is a particular priority, as planning, construction and operation of new facilities create additional business for local suppliers and contractors, and employment opportunities for citizens.”

 

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