Home: Issue 3 2011 › The main event
The main event
31/03/2011 | Channel:
Subsea UK, Environmental, Human Resources, Hire & Rental, Manufacturing, Support Services, Subsea, Lifting Gear, Drilling, Exploration & Production, Health & Safety, Equipment, Technology, IT
Since 1972, when Brian Singleton launched the very first, and very modest, S&SR LNG & LPG meeting, individuals from across the global gas and gas infrastructure industries have been meeting to attend events, conferences and speeches that have evolved to meet the ever-changing requirements of the upstream, midstream and downstream gas spectrum.
In just over 30 years Gastech has been held in 16 large cities around the world and has become one of the key highlights on the calendar of those in the industry – a place where they can meet the important decision makers and leaders of the global gas sector to discuss the latest trends and developments. In its 38-year history Gastech has not only highlighted key discussion topics and industry developments but has also been involved in a number of new initiatives including building strategic partnerships with 21 gas industry associations, the European Federation of Energy Traders, the Gas Technology Institute, Gas Processors Association and the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers.
Like many other important energy events, Gastech consists of an exhibition where
companies in the industry can display the latest equipment and technology related to the global LNG, LPG and natural gas industries, as well as an extensive conference programme.
The latter is well recognised as a mustattend event for anyone operating in the global gas industry, bringing together the world’s professional gas community to discuss and understand the key issues facing the business, both currently and into the future. Billed as an important meeting place, the conference regularly hosts more than 120 of the industry’s most prominent speakers and representatives, each holding an allotted slot over a four day period that contains ministerial keynotes, commercial, technical and speciality presentations, panel debates and Q&A sessions.
For example, this year’s conference, which was held from the 21st to the 24th March, included speeches and lectures from important figures from some of the world’s largest gas companies including Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil, BP and RasGas. It also covered topics ranging from the global market outlook, developments in safety and training and natural gas & LNG projects through to advances in key technology, new realities for LNG and floating LNG, advances in gas and unconventional gas as a game changer, and gas contracting and trading. One important issue raised is the increasingly important role of natural gas as uncertainties over both oil and nuclear power grow, whilst its status as the cleanest fossil fuel in a carbon-conscious environment has made it stand out from the crowd.
Furthermore, in light of the recent turbulent economic environment, this year’s conference also covered a number of key issues relating to the unquestionable impact that unconventional gas has had on the North American energy demand and the significant repercussions this has of course had on the wider global market.
While the conferences give attendees the opportunity to learn about important industry developments, it is the exhibition that provides the chance to experience first-hand all the latest technological innovations and meet the companies developing them. This year’s exhibition, the 25th in Gastech’s history, proved to be no different. Featuring more than 250 exhibiting companies and bringing together thousands of professionals from more than 75 countries worldwide, the 2011 exhibition represented a major showcase of the latest innovations, technologies, products, services and suppliers for professionals operating within the global gas industry.
Run in partnership with the European Federation of Energy Traders (EFET) and the
Gas Institute Technology (GTI), this year also enjoyed the presence of seniorEuropean heads of trading, industry regulators and international producers to provide a global context for the European market.
Gastech 2011 also saw the introduction of new elements to the four-day conference and exhibition. For the first time ever, the conference programme opened with a unique open discussion with a panel consisting of some of the world energy sector’s most influential figures. The panel included Malcolm Brinded, Shell’s executive director of upstream; Hans- Peter Floren from E.ON Ruhrgas’ board of management; Sheikh Al-Thani, CEO at Qatargas; and deputy prime minister of the Netherlands, Maxime Verhagen. Meanhwile, the exhibition floor welcomed the presence of the Centres for Technical Excellence (CoTE), a vendor-led educational hub that ran a wide variety of narrowly directed workshops on topics including gas storage, pipeline construction and maintenance, cryogenics, contract and commercial management, and ongoing sustainable development of the African gas market.
Whether you are a small service company or international oil major, Gastech 2011 was an excellent opportunity to become involved with the future of the industry through networking and discussion. As the largest yet in the conference and exhibition’s history, the increasing importance of Gastech to the global gas sector was reinforced by this year’s impressive turnout.