The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) held the Second High-Level Meeting of the OPEC-GECF Energy Dialogue, hosted by the GECF, on 27 October 2021, via videoconference.
The Meeting was co-chaired by HE Yury Sentyurin, GECF Secretary General, and HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, OPEC Secretary General. It noted the importance of crude oil and natural gas to the global economy and in meeting current and future energy demand, highlighting that both commodities will account for around half of the total global energy mix in the decades ahead.
“Together, OPEC and GECF can count on their respective competencies to ensure that the global economy heals after the devastation of coronavirus and that a reliable and secure energy supply serves humanity like never before,” said HE Yury Sentyurin in his opening address.
“Notwithstanding the prevalent reductionism and the cancel culture, the GECF, together with stakeholders like OPEC, aspires to present a balanced energy-transition roadmap to the international community for a constructive and informative debate. The GECF-OPEC relationship in fact demonstrates the power of constructive debate to unlock the full potential of the world’s energy system.”
In his remarks, the OPEC Secretary General highlighted the importance of the ongoing dialogue with the GECF, noting that it is crucial for the organizations of two vital energy sources to regularly cooperate and exchange views on pressing issues in the interest of global energy stability and sustainability.
“The bonds that bring our Organizations together run far deeper than the geology that has linked oil and gas since the beginning of time,” OPEC Secretary General stated, adding, “Today, it is of utmost importance that Organizations like OPEC and the GECF continue to work hand-in-hand to ensure that we remain in a strong position to provide secure, stable and sustainable supplies of energy.”
The Secretary Generals shared a statement that oil and gas have an important role to play in the energy transition and support the need to reduce emissions, bolster efficiency and embrace innovation. It is therefore important to be aware of the risks of not adequately investing in the future of the oil and gas industries.
In implementing the Memorandum of Understanding signed on 3 October 2019 in Moscow, the Russian Federation, the two intergovernmental organizations have been increasingly improving the accuracy of dataflow and analysis, strengthening the exchange of information and expertise, which dates back to mutual cooperation on JODI (Joint Organisations Data Initiative).
Both organisations now contribute to each other’s flagship publications — the World Oil Outlook and Global Gas Outlook 2050 — on a reciprocal basis. From 2022 onwards this practise is to be expanded to short- and medium- analysis of the global oil and gas markets’ development.
The Meeting examined the latest figures and estimates from OPEC and GECF’s perspectives, reviewed the outcomes of the key international debates on future of energy and environment, such as the G20 Environment, Climate and Energy Ministerial Meeting, UN High-Level Dialogue on Energy, Middle East Green Initiative Summit, as well as topics related to the upcoming UNFCCC COP26 meeting.
Apart from representing interests in two of the world’s most sought-after fuels, OPEC and GECF share several Member Countries: Algeria, Equatorial Guinea, IR Iran, Libya, Nigeria and Venezuela. OPEC Member Countries Angola, Iraq and the United Arab Emirates are GECF Observers. The discussion acknowledged a possibility of stronger cooperation with some non-OPEC countries participating in the Declaration and Charter of Cooperation that are GECF Members or Observers.
The Secretaries General recalled recent bilateral engagements, including meetings on the sidelines of the inauguration ceremony of HE Ebrahim Raisi, the new President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, in Tehran this August, as well as at the Russian Energy Week in Moscow earlier this month.
The leaders agreed to hold the next High-Level Meeting of the OPEC-GECF Energy Dialogue in 2022 in Vienna, Austria.
The GECF and OPEC signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 30 October 2019, to “exchange knowledge, experience, views, information, data and practices in the areas of mutual interest.” Areas of cooperation identified in the memorandum include energy market monitoring, analysis, modelling and forecasting; energy market research studies covering the short- medium- and long-term, and their methodologies; energy market data and statistics, data and statistical operational topics (such as methodologies of data gathering, assessment and dissemination); energy initiatives and developments aimed at sustainability, along with environmental and social responsibility; and other areas and matters involving common interests and concerns.
The inaugural OPEC-GECF High-Level Dialogue took place on 4 November 2020 via videoconference.