Drawing more than 49,000 visitors, a 20 per cent attendance rise from 2007’s event, and featuring more than 1500 exhibiting companies from around the world, this year’s Offshore Europe illustrates the enthusiasm and positive attitude in abundance throughout the industry.
The biennial event is already the largest upstream oil and gas event outside of North America, and with more than 10,000 oil industry professionals from around the world visiting on the first day alone no one was in any doubt about the importance of the event. These first day visitors to the conference and exhibition witnessed leading figures from the global exploration and production industry discuss key topics and ideas including climate and energy, breakthrough technologies and the operating model currently in use by the upstream sector.
Days two and three continued this success, with more than 30,000 guests attending the various discussions and exhibiting areas. On these days key issues were discussed in the outstanding conference panel sessions. Highlights for those attending included a session focusing on the different operating models, chaired by former BP Group CEO Lord Browne, Peter Barker-Homek of TAQA and Ayman Asfari, COE of Petrofac. More importantly, particularly in the current economic climate, were discussions and debates on the crucial aspect of nurturing and managing new talent in the global industry.
Speaking after Offshore Europe, 2009’s chairman Thomas Thune Andersen, who had previously explained his optimism about this year’s event, commented: “I really think that we have achieved what we wanted to do at the conference, which was to make sure that it was relevant, wide ranging and international.
The theme for this year’s event was ‘Energy at a Crossroads: Making Choices’, and there were many excellent discussions and debates throughout the week, both in plenary sessions and the technical programme.
“The discussions were always balanced, realistic and meaningful, with the main auditorium and many of the conference rooms often packed out. What I have particularly noted is that, as we had hoped right at the start of the process, the debate around the environment and the climate has been in everyone’s discussions. This is recognition that we in the industry must engage ourselves, and focus on minimising our environmental footprint, while continuing to provide energy to all. An extremely important thing is also that it has not been a discussion about oil and gas or alternatives but oil and gas and alternatives – and only if we take things forward.”
Thomas is justified in his enthusiasm - together with the excellent range of conference topics, Offshore Europe 2009 held the largest and most comprehensive exhibition in the history of the event. Covering 22,620 square metres, which represents a rise of 11 per cent compared to the last show, the exhibition hosted more than 1500 visiting companies from around the world, including 230 businesses that were completely new to Offshore Europe. In addition, guests were encouraged to visit two entirely new and innovative experiences, including a ‘People Zone’, which focused on training and carer development.
It is clear that the next event, to be held in Aberdeen in 2011, will have to be extremely special to top this year’s show. As 2009 SPE president and co-chairman of the Offshore Europe Partnership, Leo Roodhart concluded: “Offshore Europe remains a prime vehicle for players to come together to discuss key issues and technologies facing the upstream industry, both in the conference and on the exhibition floor, and at the many social events hosted throughout the week in and around the highly hospitable city of Aberdeen. This year’s Offshore Europe Conference and Exhibition proved to be the best ever and will be difficult to beat in the years to come. It proves again that if you offer quality people will appreciate this and come to what you have to offer.”
For more information please visit: www.offshore-europe.co.uk