THE UK Government is planning a major strategic energy conference to coincide with the Olympic Games.
It will be a leadership call to arms the likes of which has never been seen.
The oil, gas and power generation domestic market is worth hundreds of billions of dollars over the next 10 years; the global market can be measured in trillions of dollars. It represents a staggering business opportunity that must not be lost.
Indeed, the industry currently generates revenues of more than $140billion from domestic and International business. This is expected to rise to $300billion by 2030.
A Government announcement on the summit is expected today (January 9).
The event will be staged in London on August 6-7 and broadcast live to key locations across Britain, including Aberdeen.
Although it is being hosted at the British Business Embassy at Lancaster House in London, Energy can reveal that Prime Minister David Cameron is keen that the summit secures buy-in of the UK’s energy leaders.
He has apparently woken to the urgent need for a revival real trade and energy-related manufacturing at home and between UK/UK-based companies and massive global opportunities.
This is why there will be simultaneous regional broadcast of proceedings.
It is further understood that round-table sessions will be organised at each venue to provide vital strategic feedback to the core conference.
Described to Energy as a “Davos-style” event, the summit is being led by “Number 10” with close input from both Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills Vince Cable and Secretary of State for Energy Chris Huhne.
The plan has already secured an enthusiastic reception from key industry bodies such as EEEGR (East of England Energy Group), NOF Energy (North-east of England) and from Europe’s Energy Capital … Aberdeen.
Welcoming the initiative, Gordon McIntosh, director of enterprise, planning and infrastructure at Aberdeen City Council said: “It is great to see the UK Government co-ordinating such an event that will ultimately showcase the expertise both nationally and across the north-east of Scotland.”
A stellar line-up of speakers is already signed. So far, they are understood to include Lord Browne of Madingley (Riverstone Holdings), Bob Dudley (BP), Frank Chapman (BG), Neil Bruce (Amec), Aiden Heavey (Tullow Oil), Steve Holliday (National Grid), Humphrey Cadoux-Hudson (EDF), Ian Marchant (Scottish & Southern Energy) and Tony Cocker (E.ON).
Besides the above, we are advised that invitations have been sent to companies offering some of the biggest export opportunities over the next five years.
These include leading figures from Petrobras, Pemex, Saudi Aramco, ADNOC, Sonangol, the Iraq government and others.
The guest list is expected to include the biggest names that have ever been invited to attend such an event and include all key global companies involved in extraction and conversion of energy all the way through to transmission and distribution.
Neil Bruce, chief operating officer at Amec and who has just been conferred an OBE in the New Year Honours for services to engineering, said: “The UK has unique expertise in delivering engineering solutions in complex environments including frontier locations and the challenge extending the life of assets.
“This is a great opportunity for the whole of the UK to showcase their expertise and innovation, from small SMEs to large multi-nationals.”
The event is being managed though UKTI (UK Trade & Industry) led by Trade Minister Lord Green.
In addition to Government backing, a taskforce comprising top industry names are working closely with leading Government figures in developing the programme.
UKTI has mobilised the recently-appointed ‘business ambassadors’ including Malcolm Brinded, of Shell, and Samir Brikho, of Amec, to ensure that industry is fully engaged in the process.