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2019 Conference Highlights

Iraq’s Most Trusted and Senior Energy Platform

Proudly Shaping Iraq’s Oil & Gas Industry for over 13 Years


The Iraq Petroleum 2019 Conference took place on 27-28 June, in London, and was co-located for the first time, with a newly-launched Kirkuk & Mosul Megaprojects event. CWC welcomed more than 350 industry leaders and the key energy decision makers from the Iraqi Government, represented by the most senior officials, led by Iraq’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Oil H.E. Thamir Ghadhban.

Iraq Petroleum 2019 is of key importance to Iraq’s economy and was a tremendous success this year. With the agenda inspired by the vision of the New Iraqi Government, the Conference plays a big part in realising Iraq’s vision to become a major partner in the oil and gas market.

2019 was a remarkable year for Iraq’s oil and gas industry with some incredible developments. The country is embarking on the development of a number of vital and strategic projects designed to promote the energy sector in various fields.


Highlights from the 2019 Iraq Petroleum Conference


  • Iraq’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Oil, H.E. Thamir Ghadhban welcomed the event with a speech addressing the Iraq Petroleum 2019 delegates gathered in London at the Park Plaza Riverbank on the morning of the 27 June; outlining the vision of the Iraqi Government:

It’s a great pleasure to be here to address this distinguished gathering and to update you on the progress of Iraq’s oil and gas industry as well as briefly inform you about our vision regarding oil policies, plans and the development of Iraq’s oil and gas industry. (…) Our vision for the energy sector can be defined by the following statements:

      1. Iraq should be energy independent with sufficient power supply, ample gas and other fuel supplies leading to zero imports, plus maximizing and diversification of hydrocarbon exports.
      2. Enhancement of sustainable development of all energy sectors
      3. Execution of another leap forward in the upstream sector reaching higher production and export capacities taking in consideration economic growth, market fundamentals and world oil demand.
      4. Local content maximization – development of skilled manpower and modernisation of the energy sector.
      5. Carrying a step-by-step comprehensive reform of the sector’s organisation leading to the separation between regulatory, operation and marketing activities


  • The Conference welcomed the IEA delegation headed by the Executive Director of the International Energy Agency in Paris, Dr Fatih Birol who said:

I strongly believe Iraq will be able to address its remaining challenges and will prosper. The energy sector will be central to the country’s development and the IEA will continue to help Iraq on its journey to build a more productive sector

Dr Fatih Birol outlined the findings of the IEA Iraq Report that was initially launched in Baghdad in April, called ‘A Roadmap to a Brighter Future’. Global oil demand, with petrochemicals being a key driver, is currently rising by around 1mb/d per year. Iraq is and will remain a major pillar of global oil supply.


  • The British Ambassador to Baghdad Jonathan Wilks CMG in his opening remarks on the first day of the Conference said:

The UK and Iraq are becoming increasingly strong business partners and education partners, and London is becoming, as it once was, the second home for many Iraqis. (…) I am more than glass-half-full; the positives in Iraq right now, the dynamics, the sustainability of security improvements and economic improvements are really the best we have seen for many years. We now have the best [Iraqi] government that we’ve had since 2003. This is an extremely good time to be working in Iraq


  • Ambassador Ramon Blecua, Ambassador / Head of Delegation, Delegation of the European Union to Iraq said at the opening keynote session:

The Iraqi Government now is the voice of reason that search for common interest with the neighbouring countries and a regional dialogue to ease the tension in the ME is now paramount

  • Sir William Patey, Former UK Ambassador to Iraq, UK Embassy, Iraq, chairing the Ministerial keynote session, outlined the positives of the previous year and the promising outlook for Iraq’s future.
  • In addition, the Conference welcomed guests from: Iraq’s Presidency, Iraqi Federal Parliament, Iraq’s Ministry of Oil, Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity, Kurdistan Regional Parliament MPs, Kurdistan Ministry of Electricity, Kurdistan High Representation to the United Kingdom, H.E. Adil Abdulmahdi from the Prime Minister’s Office, Governors of: Mosul and Saleddin, Ministry of Construction, as well as Iraq’s Environment Ministry.

  • The 13th Iraq Petroleum Gala Dinner, hosted by Shell, took place on the evening of 27 June with remarkable attendance from the industry leaders and the Iraqi Government representatives. The evening featured the Lifetime Achievement Award that was presented to H.E. Thamir Ghadhban for H.E.’s dedication to the Iraqi oil and gas industry.



  • His Excellency’s career in Iraq’s oil sector spans over 4 decades, H.E. played a leading role in rehabilitating the severely damaged oil industry after the fall of the regime in 2003 and has been a significant contributor to the Iraq Petroleum Conference for the past 13 years. The Award was a symbolic appreciation for H.E.’s significant contribution to the Iraqi oil and gas industry and for H.E.’s contribution to the Iraq Petroleum Conference over the years.


  • The Conference was supported by our remarkable Sponsors: Chevron, Shell, Starlight, KAR, Crescent, Lukoil, Total, RSK, Garda World, Field Energy, Mitsubishi Corporation, Al Barham Group, Vinsion & Elkins, Gilgamesh, Basra Gateway Terminal, ILF Consulting Engineers, Mercantile & Maritime, Hydro C & RPSG, and Mselect.


  • The Conference programme focused on the development of partnerships in oil and gas, tapping into the large scale projects. It also included IOCs’ updates from the flagship projects, and was followed by interactive panel discussion with:
    – Dr Falah Al Amri, Minister’s Advisor for Oil & Gas Supply Affairs, Ministry of Oil, Federal Government of Iraq 
    – Michael Townshend, Regional President, BP Middle East
    – Jeffrey T. (Todd) Levy, President, Chevron Europe, Eurasia and Middle East Exploration and Production
    – Majid Jafar, CEO, Crescent Petroleum
    – Gati Saadi Al-Jebouri, Adviser on Middle East, LUKOIL



  • The Conference agenda highlighted the technology transfer for Iraq’s large energy infrastructure projects, followed by interactive panel discussion between the industry experts:
    – Ihsan Abduljabbar Ismaael Al-Saade, Director General, Basra Oil Company/ Ministry of Oil, Federal Government of Iraq
    – Farid Jadir Sadik Aljadir, Director General, North Oil Company/ Ministry of Oil, Federal Government of Iraq

  • The agenda addressed the energy transition in terms of building sustainable, long-term future for the industry and outlined the long term challenges to cope with the global transition; the interactive discussion was between:
    – HE Kameran Ali Hassan, Head of Demining, Deputy Minister of Environment, Ministry of Environment, Federal Government of Iraq
    – Dr Jehan Baban, President, The Iraqi Environment and Health Society-UK
    – David Taylor, Director Global Division, RSK Group
    Tom Heggarty, Senior Analyst, Power and Renewables, Wood Mackenzie
    – Nisar Talabany, Former Advisor to KR Prime Minister, Kurdistan Region of Iraq

Among others!


  • The opening of Day 2 agenda touched upon the economic scenarios for the future economic relationship between federal Iraq and the region of Kurdistan, presented by high level experts from Wood Mackenzie, a number of ideas were discussed highlighted the  different fiscal regimes which resulted in a diverse value proposition between the two regions..



  • The agenda touched upon the opportunities and the challenges facing the gas sector, Iraq is in dire need for the diversification of its economy, the discussion highlighted Iraq’s vision on gas, touched upon reducing carbon intensity as well as empowering the economy and promoting job creation, the discussion was led by: H.E. Thamir Ghadhban, Deputy Prime Minister for Energy & Minister of Oil, Federal Government of Iraq and joined by :
    – MP Haibat Hamad Abbas Al – Halboosi, Chairman of the Oil & Gas Committee, Federal Parliament of Iraq
    – Dr Jaafar Oklany, Commercial Director, Basra Gas Company
    Mohammad E. Makkawi, Executive Director, Projects, Crescent Petroleum
    Dr Leila Benali, Chief Economist, Energy Economics, Strategy and Sustainability, the Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP)
    Dr Michael Knights, Head, Iraq/KRG Programme, Washington Institute for Near East Policy


  • Throughout the agenda the focus on the funds for all the projects was very evident, an entire session tapped into: Where will the majors look to invest to maximize shareholder returns? Is Iraq on their radar? As well as the urgent need for investment and rebuilding confidence among investors and promoting financial stability in Iraq as well as collaboration between Iraq’s government and global financial institutions.


  • Iraq’s Ministry of electricity Senior Deputy Minister as well as high level experts discussed solutions for the investors as well as unlocking Iraq’s resources to overcome Iraq’s long terms electricity crisis as well as the evolving role of gas to power. Speakers were led by: H.E. Nafaa Abdulsada Ali Al-Hmidawi, Senior Deputy Minister, Ministry of Electricity, Federal Government of Iraq as well as Hama-Ameen Hasan Hawramany, Advisor to the Minister, Ministry of Electricity, Kurdistan Regional Government, Iraq and Mustafa Ansari, Senior Economist, Energy Economics, Strategy & Sustainability, the Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP)


  • The concluding debate was an optimistic outlook for the Iraqi oil and gas Industry, the debate touched upon the outstanding achievements across the value chain, encouraging a stable investment climate for the benefit of Iraq, the concluding debate panel was an excellent overview between Ambassador Ramon Blecua, Ambassador / Head of Delegation, Delegation of the European Union to Iraq and H.E. the Deputy Premier presenting a comprehensive vision for the oil bad gas industry as an engine for development and state building. H.E.’s knowledge of complex issues and personal engagement shined through the frank discussion.


  • Closing remarks with Nawar Abulhadi, Director of Iraq, concluded the Conference:

    The outlook remains positive. As an industry, we have much to be proud of and a bright future ahead. I’m pleased and delighted to inform you that the Conference will be taking place next year in London in June so we look forward to meeting you again at the 2020 Edition


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