Gas Arabia Summit to Focus on Strategic Development of Middle East’s Gas Industry

Muscat: This December, a plethora of global and regional industry experts will convene at the 2012 Gas Arabia Summit for four days to discuss how to capitalise on the numerous opportunities that the gas industry offers.

QNB Capital, an affiliate of Qatar National Bank reported that The Middle East region has around 42 trillion cubic metres (tcm) of gas to benefit from.

Organised by the Energy Exchange, the eighth annual Gas Arabia Summit will be held from 2 – 5 December 2012 in Muscat, Oman. This year’s event is co-hosted by Oman Gas Company, Oman LNG, BP and Petroleum Development Oman and sponsored by TOTAL, OMV, Honeywell and UOP.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) reported that the expected Middle East gas consumption would rise from 389 billion cubic metres (bcm) in 2011, to 468 bcm in 2017. However, this 79 bcm of additional gas supply forecast is contingent on the successful development of relatively expensive new gas fields.

The 2012 Gas Arabia Summit will focus on the entire gas sector including two days dedicated strictly to developing unconventional gas and reducing gas flaring respectively.

Last year, Sultan Chatila, Regional Marketing Director for UOP, said: “Gas Arabia is a key event for gas upstream and downstream interaction at the executive level.” Distinguished speakers will take the podium to discuss the favourable economics, logistics, strategies and efficient methods of extraction to significantly enhance productivity of this potentially lucrative resource.

The main Gas Arabia Summit will provide a comprehensive analysis on the gas industry both globally and regionally. Presentations and discussions will help attendees understand the global gas industry, international demand and supply, global strategies in terms of anticipating setbacks and execution, technological updates and regional opportunities.

Arianna Neri, Project Director, Gas Arabia Summit, said: “Gas is an interesting element, a non-commodity but very much treated and traded as if it was. This year the Gas Arabia Summit will largely focus on strategic development as opposed to tactical execution. We have further expanded the summit’s scope to not just focus on Oman, but the rest of the region, specifically Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

With representatives from several leading international gas companies confirmed to participate at this year’s summit, it is the ideal platform to develop business strategies and sit among key decision makers in the gas arena.” The QNB Capital Report states that Qatar has the GCC’s largest gas wealth of nearly 25 tcm, the world’s third after Russia and Iran. Furthermore, Saudi Arabia has nearly 7.5 tcm of gas resources, the UAE has 7 tcm and Kuwait has 3 tcm.

According to the International Group of LNG Importers, despite a global economic downturn, LNG trade volumes grew by almost 10 per cent in 2011, with global output reaching 240.8 million tonnes.

These global statistics illustrate that if the Middle East develops its gas sector, the region can benefit significantly whilst reducing each country’s overwhelming dependence on oil.

Following the global outlook on the gas industry, speakers will shift focus to explain the opportunities and challenges present in the region. Topics of discussion will include: turning exploration into power; key techniques that will unlock regional unconventional gas reserves; the best way to generate a regional industrial revolution; the role governments, NOCs and IOCs should play in supporting the growth of a fully functioning gas industry; developing human capital in the regional gas industry; and much more.

At the 2011 Gas Arabia Summit, an interactive discussion based on the results of the Gas Flaring Survey, sponsored by Saudi Aramco was held. The survey was organised to benchmark on the regional awareness on gas flaring and to better understand what companies are practically implementing to shift the trend. The discussion concluded with the preliminary agreement to meet next year and with the hope to establish a stable working group to share knowledge on gas flaring.

Building on last year’s inaugural meeting, the final day of the 2012 Gas Arabia Summit will be dedicated to Gas Flaring. Experts in the field of gas flaring will speak on the economic and environmental damage that is currently occurring. In addition, alternatives and strategies will be discussed on how to both efficiently use and dispose of this highly significant and valuable resource.