(OAPEC) 53 years in laying the foundations for cooperation and coordination of Arab Industrial and Petroleum
Saturday marks the 53 anniversary of the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC), which was established on January 9, 1968, also is a remarkable Arab achievement no matter how much the Arab countries are able to overcome the critical repercussions, and what they been through in that period and moved forward towards working to build economies on a well-thought out and well-studied foundations. The announcement of the organization establishment was a serious attempt by a group of Arab countries, to establish a new concept of cooperation among them, which consists the focus on petroleum affairs as the world’s main source of energy and on the nascent oil and gas-related oil industry as the backbone of the economy of many Arab countries. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the State of Kuwait and the State of Libya (the Kingdom of Libya at the time), initiated this tend and were the founding countries of the organization (OAPEC), where an agreement was signed in Beirut. Also, eight Arab countries joined the organization which are: the UAE, Bahrain, Qatar, Algeria, Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Tunisia. The Secretary General of (OAPEC) Ali Bin Sabt, on this occasion told the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) on Friday, since the organization has been aimed its inception to lay out the foundations of the cooperation and coordination. Among its members in various aspects, of the economic activity related to the Petroleum industry, and to determine the means to preserve its interests and defend its rights. Bin Sabt has confirmed the efforts of (OAPEC), to unite efforts to secure oil supplies to the markets consumption on fair and acceptable terms, by providing the right conditions for capital experience investors in the oil industry of the state members. Also it was clear that the (OAPEC), is constantly coordinating oil policies for its members, through continuous follow-up of developments in the international petroleum markets and the preparation of specialized economic and technical studies, in this field and work to facilitate to exchange information and experiences to provide training opportunities among the state members. The organization operates through four organs which are: the Council of Ministers, the Executive office, the Secretariat and Judiciary. He declared that (the Council of Ministers), is the supreme authority of the organization by drawing up its policy and directing its activities and setting the rules. While the (Executive office), has the task of assisting the (Council of Ministers) in overseeing the affairs of the organization. Also it was mention that, the (General Secretariat) is responsible for planning, managing and implementing the organization activities, by achieving the objectives that were set forth in the board, the convention of its establishment and accordance with the decisions and directives of the Council of Ministers. Also it was added that the (judiciary), is specialized in consideration of the related petroleum issues between country members, in a manner that does not conflict with the territorial sovereignty of every country. Bin Sabt insisted that, the organization’s most important success is what has been emerged, about Arab joint projects in the oil industry fields, aimed at achieving the cooperation in its establishment agreement in various aspects of economic activity in the petroleum industry. These also include the Arab Maritime Petroleum Transport Company, the Arab Petroleum Investment Company (Assari) and the Arab Petroleum Training Institute, regard to the activities of (OAPEC) on the Arab and international levels. Bin Sabt mentioned that the organization, participates in many meetings held within the framework of the Arab League specialized agencies of the United Nations, on energy and the environment such as: the Framework convention on climate change, ESCWA and other as well as conferences, meetings and seminars dealing with various topics in the oil industry fields. The Secretariat also organized courses annually, including seminars for exploration and other post-production industries, involving technicians from state members and other Arab states, where the meeting combines the expertise of the state members and participating foreign specialists. Every two years, the General Secretariat holds a form for the fundamentals of the oil and gas industry. With the aim of developing the technical and administrative capabilities of middle management workers, as well as the specialized meetings and seminars on developments in oil and gas industry, environmental issues, climate change and other topics related to the organization’s specialties. Since 1979 it was pointed out that, the organization started holding the Arab Energy conference every four years, with the participation group of Arab organizations. Where it is held in a capital of an Arab country every time, whether from state members or from other Arab countries. It was mentioned in this conference is a platform for discussion between the Arab and foreign experts and specialists on various aspects and areas of oil and gas industry, especially for the energy industry in general, such as: electricity generation, coal-based industries, nuclear power plants and renewable energies on the Arab and the international levels. It was claimed that, the conference aimed to create the institutional framework of Arab ideas and perceptions of oil and energy issues and develop compatible visions on them and coordinate relations between Arab institutions. Also engaged in activities related to energy, development and studying Arab energy needs now and in the further and ways to meet them. Also it was mentioned that, the conference provides an opportunity to exchange views and experiences between all participants, to present their issues related to energy and draw the profile of the Arab cooperation in this area. Where so far eight conferences have been held in various Arab capitals, which was held in Abu Dhabi in March 1979. Bin Sabt has clarified that (OAPEC), works to support and develop its relations and contacts in the global petroleum forms, where it is introducing the Arab concept related to energy, sustainable development and the environment. The organization was also exploring prospects of cooperation and dialogue between state members of the organization and countries consuming oil, as well as with developing countries to access scientific and technical developments, that achieved in the field of energy and the possibility of benefiting them. Also it was pointed out that, (OAPEC) is pursuing several channels including specialized scientific seminars held in cooperation with similar international organizations and institutions, especially for those who are interested in energy affairs regionally, internationally and universities. Including the International Energy Form, International Petroleum Congress, the French Petroleum Institute, Oxford Institute for Energy studies and specialized agencies of the United Nations. Also it was assured that, the organization maintains strong relations with energy institutions in China, Japan and India under the umbrella of the Arab Economic Cooperation Forms, which are coordinated by the Arab League. Noting that it was among the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies established in November 1982. It was pointed to support the (OAPEC) scientific research and Arab researchers, where the (OAPIC) scientific award was established in 1985. In order to encourage scientific research in the Petroleum industry field, also related to the progress that was made in the fields of basic or applied scientific research. Which contributes to the development of petroleum production techniques, in all stages and improve the economics of the petroleum projects throughout the oil industry. On the media and publishing level, Bin Sabt said that, the General Secretariat of OAPEC welcomes the cooperation with various Arab and international media and expresses its full readiness to provide them with the news and activities of the organization, the information data of the information bank and the organization’s library of the General Secretariat, which includes a huge collection of books, research studies and articles on various aspects of the energy industry. It was declared that the Secretariat issues a number of fixed periodicals, including the: monthly newsletter, the journal of oil and Arab cooperation, the monthly follow-up of Arab and international energy sources, annual statistical report, the Secretariat General report and introductory bulletin. By explaining, that they all contribute to monitoring Arab and the global developments in the oil and gas industry. Bin Sabt, expressed his thanks to the state members of the organization, representatives of the Members of the Council of Ministers of the organization (OAPEC), for the continued support of the work and activities of the General Secretariat, which enabled the General Secretariat to continue to perform its work in a perfect way.