Iraq Energy Institute (IEI) has concluded its first Iraq Energy Forum (IEF) which was held in Baghdad last week. The successful three-days major event was organized in cooperation with the Council of Representatives with attendance exceeding 220 delegates representing parliamentarians, diplomats, former ministers, politicians, the UN, industry experts, academics and executives from prominent international companies.
In spite of various logistical challenges, the 3-days forum achieved remarkable strides by providing a professional platform to debate pivotal topics to Iraq's economy. This included three master classes, forum debates, presentations, research papers and "Iraq Energy Award".
The three master classes included three simultaneous sessions: a) "Doing business in Iraq hosted by Ernst & Young", b) IPP & EPC contracts & processes hosted by Maxwell Stamp, and c) a debate forum panel on oil & gas policies & development. The focus of the 2nd day of the forum was on oil & gas development with panels debating petroleum policies and various technical presentations on mega projects, water injection planning, risk assessment and commercial framework. The third day focused on power, infrastructure, renewable energy, sustainable development, and a workshop hosted by Schlumberger on capacity building, training and manpower planning.
H.E. Dr. Adnan Al Janabi, Chairman of the Oil and Energy Committee at parliament expressed his appreciation for the forum saying " it is a unique platform for experts to reflect on the ongoing professional debate in Iraq on energy policies within the spirit of the constitution, which is really a critical topic to the Oil & Energy Committee as it complements the ongoing discussions inside the Committee on a batch of vitally important pieces of pending legislations such as the hydrocarbon and revenue sharing laws."
On his part, professor Ali Al Sayigh, the Chairman of the IEI board stated that: "We aim to encourage candid and constructive dialogue on sensitive policy issues in Baghdad with the ultimate target being the vital interests of the Iraqi people and government." Meanwhile, Luay J. Al Khateeb, the Chief Executive Officer and founder of the Institute has confirmed that "The Iraq Energy Forum initiative underlines our institute's vision and the country's firm commitment towards maintaining a sustainable business environment while focusing on long-term economic growth for all Iraqis."
The United Nations has also actively contributed to the forum with the active presence of the UN Secretary-General Special Reprehensive to Iraq Mr. Martin Kobler who hailed the convening of the event saying: "...special attention to holding events in the heart of Baghdad...very good that Iraq Energy Forum is being held in Baghdad, following such high impact events, as the Arab League Summit and the Palestinian Detainees Conference."
IEI forum has also witnessed the launch of the Institute's annual energy award which was granted this year's to Dr. Fadhil Chalabi (former acting Secretary General of OPEC in 1980s) for his distinguished contributions to the energy sector during the past 6 decades. The presentation of the award was delivered by the Chairman of the parliamentary Oil & Energy Committee Mr. Adnan Al Janabi.
IEI has institutionalized this forum which will be held annually in Iraq and the IEF organizing committee is due to announce next year's event soon. Also, all IEF recommendations will be published soon and officially presented to the Govt. and Parliament of Iraq.