The power 50 : 41 - 50
The 50 most powerful people in Middle East Oil & Gas
The boss of oil services giant Petrofac, Ayman Asfari sits at the helm of one of the fastest growing FTSE 100 businesses. By any measure, Asfari is a success story.
He took his first role in construction in Oman in his early 20s in a bid to fund an MBA at Wharton. Studying business turned out to be unnecessary; less than a decade later, he was a millionaire with his own firm.
Since buying out Petrofac in 2001, Asfari has turned it into one of the leading players in the oil market. It listed in 2005 and today employs more than 11,000 people worldwide, with bases spanning London, Russia and Algeria.
No contractor has dominated the regional upstream headlines like Petrofac in the past eighteen months. While much of the world teetered on the edge of financial oblivion, the giant still booked a backlog sufficient to make the competition wince.
Deputy Managing Director (North Kuwait)
Kuwait Oil Company
Hashim is the deputy managing director of North Kuwait asset of Kuwait Oil Company (KOC), the national oil company of the State of Kuwait, one of the ten largest oil companies of the world. Hashim joined Kuwait Oil Company in 1982.
Her experience was developed as a petroleum and reservoir engineer, and includes extensive contributions to the Kuwait upstream business, having held diverse and challenging leadership positions in Kuwait Oil Co, spanning from reservoir management activities to corporate-scale projects.
Hashim’s main project for KOC is developing its North Kuwait assets to produce 1 milllion barrels per day by 2014, from around 750,000 bpd at present.
KOC has been ramping up production since the summer, taking an active role in calming turbulent oil markets with higher production.
President Middle East & Africa
Emerson Process Management
Dave Tredinnick helps to keep the region’s oil and gas projects running smoothly. As regional president of Emerson, he has participated in the boom in large infrastructure projects, with Emerson often providing bespoke solutions that push the region’s development forward.
Emerson has been in the UAE for over 35 years, and is working on some of the most innovative upstream projects in the Emirates, such as Abu Dhabi’s Shah Gas project.
President, Middle East
Bjarte Pedersen hails from Norway, and holds a masters degree in Process Control Systems. He has been with ABB since 1992.
ABB is currently engaged in some of the region’s most exciting upstream developments, inlcuding Abu Dhabi’s sour gas development project, and is supplying new emission monitoring equipment to Qatargas.
ABB engagement has increasingly become a critical component for upstream project owners seeking to improve operational efficiency and uptime optimisation.
Saudi Arabian Chevron
Ahmed Al-Omer is overseeing an extensive and important large scale pilot of steamflooding for heavy oil in the five billion barrel, 5,000 sq km Wafra field in the neutral zone between Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
The project has implications for the likely lifespan of mature fields across the region and particularly for Saudi, where oil is getting heavier as fields reach maturity and enter decline.
Every 1% increase in production yield adds 100 million barrels to the zone’s reserves, so if applied across Saudi Arabia’s fields it would keep the Kingdom producing for many decades to come. The technical challenges are huge, including the need to provide steam equivalent to three barrels for every barrel of oil produced.
Current estimates show the project is a success, doubling or tripling the field’s conventional reserves. Al-Omer is aiming to pump 500,000 barrels per day from the Eocene reservoir of the field.
Aramco/Chevron will take a final investment decision in late 2013. If the project proceeds, the first phase of steam injection will begin by 2017. Test costs totaled $350 million, making deployment in earnest a massive commitment.
Abdullah Saeed al-Suwaidi
National Drilling Company (UAE)
Abu Dhabi has targeted crude production of 3.5 million barrels a day by 2018. It is now up to operators such as National Drilling Company, headed up by Abdullah Saeed al-Suwaidi, to make that ambitious production boost a reality.
Established in 1972 by ministerial decree, Abu Dhabi’s National Drilling Company (NDC) is considered to be one of the largest drilling contractors in the Middle East, providing drilling, work-over and well maintenance services.
With nearly 100 billion barrels of oil in reserves, the UAE can rest assured that it will have access to a secure energy source for the foreseeable future. Nevertheless, the development of hydrocarbon resources is an ongoing necessity.
The United Arab Emirates is targeting an oil production boost of 800, 000 bpd to around 3.5 million bpd by 2018. the gauntlet has been thrown down for all companies involved in exploration and production in the country’s rich onshore and offshore fields.
Nabil Al Alawi
The energetic Nabil Al Alawi tipped 2011 as a year of recovery for the region’s oil and gas contracting environment, and he was right.
The resolutely bullish Alawi has been hiring hundreds of staff this year for UAE-based, home-grown Al Mansoori on the back of a strong order book and excellent prospects for large upstream projects. The company is active in most of the region’s booming markets, including Kurdistan, where it has operated for six years.
Fatima Al Jaber
Al Jaber Group
In her position as chief operating officer of the Abu Dhabi-based Al Jaber Group, Fatima Al Jaber oversees more than 50,000 staff and manages around $4.9bn in assets.
She is a regular speaker at business conferences across the region as well as a high profile ambassador for women in the workplace. Al Jaber is also fiercely proud of the opportunities available for Emirati women.
“Everything is there; if a woman wants to start a business she can. If she wants to work in government, she can find a job. If she wants to study, there are all sorts of education venues and places to study. The choices are all there,” she told CEO Middle East last month.
Al Jaber became the first Emirati woman to be elected to the board of directors at the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce in December 2009.
Khamis Juma Buamim
Located in one of the rapidly developing regions of the world and a busy trading route, Drydocks World’s Dubai shipyard is one of the most prolific shipyards in operation. The shipyard is the largest facility in the Middle East and is the flagship company of Dubai World subsidiary Drydocks World.
Buamim, who took the reins in 2010, has been steering the company away from a highly-leveraged global acquisition spree to a sustainable growth strategy. With sustained high oil prices, Drydocks World is now well-poised to capitalised on its more prudent position.
Buamim was with Conoco and ConocoPhillips for 26 years in various management positions, including Vice President of Dubai Petroleum Company (DPC), a ConocoPhillips affiliate company in the United Arab Emirates.
Bahrain Petroleum Company
Faisal al-Mahroos is in charge of both the upstream and the downstream sectors in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Recent success stories for Bapco in 2011 included the start of production at the base oil plant in Bahrain, in joint venture with Neste Oil and nogaholding.
Al-Mahroos is a petroleum engineer who obtained his degrees from Egypt and the US, Al Mahroos joined Bapco in 1976, after an year-long training at the Gulf of Suez Oil Company.
He was later promoted to head of reservoir engineering, chief petroleum engineer and manager-petroleum engineering. Al Mahroos was appointed deputy chief executive for exploration and production in 2006.
Al Mahroos’s challenge is implementing Bapco’s ambitious vision. “My main challenge as the CEO is to fully implement Bapco’s current vision of striving for excellence,” Al Mahroos, who commands a $5 billion budget, says.
“This statement covers all stakeholders – our customers, our shareholder, our business partners, our employees and our communities.”