The 12th Annual GPCA Forum: Beginning of a New Journey

Under the theme – The chemical industry in transformation: A new journey begins – the 12th Annual GPCA Forum is set to take place during 27-29 November 2017, at Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai, UAE.

NEWS, Industry Trends

In line with this year’s theme, the 2017 edition of the Annual Forum is centred on the opportunities afforded by organisational transformation and aims to facilitate the exchange of ideas on topics that have great implications for the industry – and are influencing the corporate agenda.

With the industry undergoing significant changes, in the wake of geopolitical shifts and an evolving technological landscape, there has never been a more important time to address the issues of transformation and disruption.

The 12th Annual GPCA Forum, the flagship event in the global industry’s calendar, will bring together renowned thought leaders and experts from the industry to share insights on driving strategic partnerships, diversification, investments and capitalising on a new era of changes in the global competiveness landscape.

The Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association (GPCA) has announced the line-up of confirmed speakers for the 12th Annual GPCA Forum.

His Excellency Khalid A Al-Falih, minister of energy, industry and mineral resources, Saudi Arabia, will deliver the inaugural address at the 12th Annual GPCA Forum.

Yousef Al-Benyan, vice chairman and CEO, SABIC, and Chairman, GPCA, will open the forum, while Hariolf Kottmann, CEO, Clariant, and president, International Council of Chemical Associations (ICCA) and the European Chemical Industry Council (Cefic), will deliver the keynote address.

HE Al-Falih is joined on the programme by an impressive group of leading industry figures, who will offer their visionary perspectives on the current chemical landscape and how to achieve successful company transformation: Neil A Chapman, president, ExxonMobil Chemical Company, and VP, ExxonMobil Corporation; Bob Patel, CEO and chairman, management board, LyondellBasell; Abdulaziz M Al-Judaimi, senior vice president, downstream, Saudi Aramco; John Allert, chief marketing officer and board director, McLaren; Dr Markus Steilemann, CCO, and member, board of management, Covestro; Todd D Karran, president and CEO, Nova Chemicals; Fernando Musa, CEO, Braskem; Rebecca Liebert, president and CEO, Honeywell UOP; Dr Nahed Taher, co-founder, Gulf One Investment bank; Ziad S Al-Labban, CEO, Sadara Chemical Company; and Patrick Thomas, CEO, Covestro.

Dr Abdulwahab Al-Sadoun, secretary general, GPCA, said: “Despite continued market volatility and increased competition abroad, petrochemical growth in the GCC region topped the global average growth. The industry grew at 3.7% in 2016 reaching 150 million tonnes of capacity, outpacing the global average of 2.2%.”

“As ‘transformational’ new, highly complex projects come on stream in 2017-2018, growth is set to continue, shifting the focus from commodity chemicals to higher value specialty products,” added Dr Al-Sadoun.

Dr Al-Sadoun commented: “We are honoured to have His Excellency Khalid Al-Falih deliver the inaugural address at the 12th Annual GPCA Forum at a time when the petrochemical industry in the region is at the forefront of economic transformation, job creation and growth, serving as a key enabler for Saudi Vision 2030.”

“The immense commitment and support on the part of the Saudi Arabian energy ministry to driving the national transformation programme is truly commendable and serve as a testament to their foresight and true leadership,” added Dr Al-Sadoun.

“This is the third time we receive His Excellency at the Annual GPCA Forum as part of an excellent line-up of speakers comprising global and regional industry leaders and senior business executives. Without a doubt, this is a testimony to the pivotal role the Arabian Gulf industry plays in the world chemical agenda, and its growing status as a global player on the international market,” commented Dr Al-Sadoun.

With this in mind, 2017 marks another promising year for the Annual GPCA Forum, as an array of opportunities come to the fore.

Dr Al-Sadoun continued: “The Annual GPCA Forum has emerged as an essential knowledge-sharing and networking platform for regional and global stakeholders, where delegates can gather insights from the CEOs of the world’s leading chemical firms.”

“As a mainstay on the downstream sector’s yearly calendar, the 2017 Annual GPCA Forum is set to be the most impactful edition yet and is a must-attend event for key players from the industry,” concluded Dr Al-Sadoun.

Besides the main conference programme, seminars held over the course of the three-day forum will provide key insights and enable industry players to initiate transformational change within their organisations. A seminar entitled ‘Collaborating and Growing in a Fast-transforming Global Landscape’ will be the highlight of Day 0.

The 12th edition of the GPCA forum is set to attract over 2,000 delegates from 51 countries, comprising global industry experts, thought leaders and senior officials from regional government entities, industry and academia, to share insights on driving strategic partnerships, diversification, investments and capitalising on a new era of challenges in the global chemical industry.

As part of the GPCA’s ‘Leaders of Tomorrow’ programme – a platform that provides university and college students engaged in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields an opportunity to learn through close interaction with industry leaders – there will also be a dedicated seminar for students eager to pursue a career in the downstream industry.

Last year’s edition of the Annual GPCA Forum drew more than 2,000 international chemical executives in Dubai to gain essential information, make new connections and renew existing relationships. Since the first meeting in 2006, the event attendance has grown steadily year-on-year.


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