The power 50 : 11 - 20
The 50 most powerful people in Middle East Oil & Gas
Sheikh Khalid Bin Khalifa Al Thani
Sheikh Khalid was previously director of Ras Laffan Industrial City, home to much of Qatar’s gas infrastructure including all of its LNG production facilities.
Now Al Thani is in charge of QatarGas, which also operates the Laffan Refinery, the only condensate refinery in the Middle East.
Under Al Thani’s stewardship, the Laffan refinery is currently producing 146,000bpd, and is slated to expand its capacity to 296,000 bpd by 2015.
Abu Dhabi Gas Development Company
Saif Al-Ghafli is heading up one of the most challenging upstream projects in the Gulf – the Shah sour gas development. Abu Dhabi – and the wider region – needs gas supplies to meet domestic demand from power generation and industrial feedstock.
While Abu Dhabi has 200 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, its potentially lethal levels of sulphur – together with low demand and high production prices – have put off the Emirate from developing the field previously.
After the exit of ConocoPhillips last year, Ghafli has kept the project on course, appointing billions of dollars worth of contracts to a range of services and engineering companies.
Korea’s Samsung Engineering and Italy’s Saipem have won an aggregate of about $5 billion in contracts for gas processing and sulphur recovery. Saipem won contracts for $1.9 billion for gas processing, $1.45 billion for sulphur recovery and $196 million for product pipelines. Tecnicas Reunidas and Punj Lloyd Group also won a contract worth $463 million for gas gathering.
Ghafli also brought US oil independent Occidental on board in January this year, with Oxy taking a 40% participating interest and ADNOC retaining 60%.
The project will involve several gas gathering systems, construction of processing trains to process one billion cubic feet per day of gas at Shah to produce around 500 million cubic feet per day of network gas and other related hydrocarbon liquids, in addition to new gas and liquid pipelines.
Hamid Rashid Al Mohannadi
Hamad Rashid Al Mohannadi joined RasGas — Qatar’s second biggest liquefied natural gas producer — as managing director in 2007. He has been a board member of Ras Laffan Liquefied Natural Gas Company Limited since 1993.
Prior to joining RasGas, from 1992 he was general manager at Qatar Petrochemical Company (QAPCO) responsible for its growth and expansion. In addition to his role as QAPCO general manager, he is also general manager of QATOFIN.
Qatar Country Chairman, Pearl GTL Manager
Andy Brown has lived and breathed Shell’s most ambitious single project for the last eight years. Having spearheaded Shell’s return to Qatar, he has been at the helm of the Pearl gas-to-liquids (GTL) plant, bringing one of the most complex industrial projects ever undertaken to fruition in the baking Qatari desert, from scratch.
Brown, who has been with Shell for 25 years in seven countries, presided over a site requiring 52,000 workers, 500 million man hours, $19 billion of Shell’s money, and 3,500 of Shell’s patents.
When it reaches full production in mid-2012, Pearl will account for around 10% of Shell’s total worldwide production, and provide Qatar with what Brown called “a natural hedge against the vagaries of the gas markets” by allowing the country to take advantage of high oil prices with oil-like products, from blended diesel to lubricants.
Pearl GTL will have the capacity to produce 140,000 barrels a day of high quality GTL products (gasoil, naphtha, kerosene, normal-paraffin and lubricants base oils), thereby help meet the increasing global demand for high quality hydrocarbon.
It will also produce 120,000 barrels a day of Natural Gas Liquids (liquefied petroleum gas and condensate) and ethane.
Brown will continue to play a huge role in shaping the region’s upstream scene, as Shell tilts from an oil to a gas company, and as the State of Qatar considers further expansion of its gas infrastructure – which may include a third train at Pearl.
Iranian National Oil Company
Ahmad Qalebani has his work cut out developing Iran’s upstream sector. Appointed in April 2010, he is tasked with reversing a precipitous decline in Iran’s oil production.
A report from the Middle East Economic Survey (MEES) in Junes revealed that Iranian oil production fell in 2010 from its 2009 level by an average of 70,000 barrels per day (bpd).
Meanwhile, economic reforms that have slashed subsidies have weakened domestic aggregate demand, which may have the effect of dampening the perceived need for further development and foreign investment.
Iran has suffered a brain drain in recent years as technocratic posts in key upstream positions have been filled with political appointees.
The sector has reportedly been affected by industrial action, sanctions are biting hard, and the Oil Ministry, headed by the truculent Rostam Qasemi, has recently lost patience with Gazprom and CNPC for taking too long on field development, while refusing to make concessions that would make doing business in the country easier.
Raoul Restucci is responsible for the day-to-day management of Oman’s PDO.
Under Restucci PDO has developed a reputation for trying innovative techniques for getting at Oman’s mature stores of oil and tight gas, from waterflooding to Microbial Enhanced Oil Recovery.
Before his time at PDO, Restucci has been an Executive VP and Country Chairman of Shell Group of Companies - Dubai & North Emirates at Royal Dutch Shell since September 2010, and President and Chief Executive Officer of Shell Exploration & Production Company.
Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh has overseen Dolphin Energy, one of the most important cross-GCC energy infrastructure projects in recent years, and one that may be instructive as the GCC’s demand for gas increases.
Dolphin Energy began gas production in July 2007. The project involves the production and processing of natural gas from Qatar’s North Field, and transportation of refined gas from Ras Laffan Industrial City by subsea pipeline across joint UAE-Qatari waters to the UAE.
The overall investment in constructing the project infrastructure has made it one of the largest energy-related ventures ever undertaken in the Middle East. Occidental and Total were instrumental in getting the project running.
Additionally, Al Sayegh is also the Chairman of Masdar a leader in making renewable energy a real, viable business and Abu Dhabi a global centre of excellence in the renewable energy and clean technology, and investment company Mubadala.
Executive Chairman, CEO and Chairman
DNO International, RAK Petroleum
Bijan Mossavar-Rahmani is an experienced oil and gas executive, who in addition to his roles at DNO and RAK Petroleum, serves as Chairman of Foxtrot International, a privately-held Franco-American oil and gas company active in West Africa. He was founder and first chief executive of Houston-based Apache International, Inc.
DNO was the first company to sign a production sharing contract with the Kurdish Regional Government (2004), and the first company to export Kurdish oil (2009). Under Mossavar-Rahmani’s stewardship, the Oslo-listed company is set to merge with RAK Petroleum to create a Middle East-focused business with high-margin interests across the region and a reputation for local savvy.
DNO’s Kurdish assets have already made the enlarged company a takeover target, with Genel Energy positioning themselves to make an offer once the RAK deal is done.
In addition to his industry positions, Mossavar-Rahmani is a Director of the Persepolis Foundation and serves as a member of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government Visiting Committee and on the Board of Trustees of the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art.
He has published more than ten books and dozens of articles on global energy markets and was decorated Commandeur de l’Ordre National de la Côte d’Ivoire for services to the energy sector of that country.
Abdul Jaleel Al-Khalifa
In 2000, Dragon Oil inherited an under-developed oil concession in the Cheleken Contract Area of the Caspian Sea and never looked back.
The majority ENOC-owned company has increased production from Cheleken from 7,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2000 to over 60,000 bpd in 2011.
Al-Khalifa is now eyeing international expansion with the $1.3 billion in cash it has accumulated, and is in the the fourth bidding round in Iraq.
“We are looking at multiple assets now,” Al-Khalifa confirmed to Oil & Gas Middle East earlier this year. “We intend to have multiple assets globally.” Al-Khalifa predicts Dragon Oil’s production growth will be 10-15% for the next three years.
In 2007, 32 year-old BadrJafar became Executive Director, having assisted in the incorporation of Dana Gas in 2005.
After a period of diffuse expansion Crescent is now focused on its core concessions offshore in the UAE, onshore in Sharjah, and Iraq, where the company has bases in Basra, Baghdad and Erbil.
In Northern Iraq, Crescent has an affiliated Gas Cities development project that aims to put the gas resources from Dana Gas’ onshore Khor Mor Gas Field to work in delivering power to the Kurdish region.
Jafar is also the founder-Chief Executive Officer of Crescent Investments, the Crescent Group conglomerate’s non-petroleum division that manages a swathe of family businesses.
Jafar was named Energy CEO of the Year in 2010 in CEO Middle East magazine, and a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2011.