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OPEC’s Secretary General in Interview With TeleSUR

  • 8th OPEC International Seminar. Jul. 6, 2023.

    8th OPEC International Seminar. Jul. 6, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/@JorgeGestoso

Published 6 July 2023

8th OPEC International Seminar in Vienna under the theme "Towards a Sustainable and Inclusive Energy Transition."

The secretary general of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Haitham Al-Ghais, said in declarations to the multi-state teleSUR on Thursday that the global oil market enjoys stability.

The 8th OPEC International Seminar kicks off in Vienna

At the 8th OPEC International Seminar held in the Austrian capital, Vienna, the Secretary General said that there is currently a balanced market and no deficits have occurred. Al-Ghais noted that the production of non-OPEC countries, such as the U.S. and Brazil, is growing, while Russia has inserted in India and China the production that was previously destined for the European market.

On the occasion, the official said that the voluntary cuts in crude oil production, announced by Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Algeria, are preventive actions in the face of what could be considered signs of uncertainty. In this regard, he mentioned the reopening of the Chinese economy after the pandemic, which is moving at a slower pace than expected.

Regarding OPEC's initiative to dedicate its seminar to the theme of "Sustainable and Inclusive Energy Transition," he said that in recent years, the need to reduce dependence on oil and gas and turn to other sources of energy has been noted. Al-Ghais considered that fossil fuels (oil, gas, and coal) and renewable sources, as well as other types of energy, would be necessary to meet the challenges facing the global economy. 

He said that the world will need 23 percent more energy until 2045, a year in which there will be a significant increase in population. All this cannot be met by a single energy source, he said.

He said that 80 percent of the world's energy is obtained from fossil fuels and that it is not possible to migrate to other sources in just one decade. He stressed that the transfer from one energy source to another must be well planned and managed according to the particularities and asymmetries of each country. In this regard, he recalled that 600 million people on the African continent live without electricity.

He emphasized that the oil industry is part of the solution to the environmental problem and pollution, as it has the technology and specialists with knowledge and experience to implement initiatives to reduce emissions.

Al-Ghais noted the importance of investing more in the sector, which has seen a decline in investments globally since 2015. He valued the fact that investments have to be made to maintain current production levels and create conditions to increase them. He recalled that, according to forecasts, demand should increase to 110 million barrels of crude oil per day by 2045 from the 101 million currently produced.

Furthermore, he added that in his visit to Venezuela months ago, he learned firsthand about PDVSA's investment in its refineries and other efforts to improve its facilities. The Secretary General highlighted the work done by the South American country as a founding country of OPEC since 1960, noting that "we are fighting together to stabilize the oil market, and Venezuela has played a significant role in the work" of the organization.

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