More than 600 delegates traveled to the Royal Commission in Yanbu’ to attended the annual Saudi Downstream Conference held March 4 and 5.
The conference brought together key stakeholders and businesses from throughout the region to discuss how to maximize opportunities from the Saudi downstream sector of petrochemicals and renewables. The event was attended by HRH Prince Faisal Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Governor of Medina, and HH Prince Saud Bin Abdullah Bin Thunayyan Al-Saud, Chairman, Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu’. Also taking part in the event were HE Ali I. Al-Naimi, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, and HE Abdullatif Al-Othman, Governor of the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority. Saudi Aramco was represented by 22 delegates at the event, including Warren Wilder, executive director of Chemicals, and Omar Bazuhair, executive director for Refining and NGL Fractionation. The company came with one simple, unifying message, which was to explain how the strategy of petrochemicals and value parks will bring jobs and growth to the Kingdom.
This effort is central to the company’s transformation strategy of maximizing hydrocarbon returns to create jobs and investment opportunities within the Kingdom. Wilder represented Saudi Aramco in a panel discussion titled “Driving the Downstream Industry through a Clustering Approach,” which touched on a variety of topics, including: Value parks as a catalyst to creating jobs and creating business within the Kingdom.
Saudi Aramco commitment to making downstream a success within the Kingdom. International comparisons, of which Wilder shared his international experience and the successes of other countries that have successfully maximized downstream opportunities. Wilder emphasized that he fully believes “the ingredients have already been assembled within the Kingdom and there is no reason for a vibrant downstream sector not to succeed.” Bazuhair collected the Saudi Aramco sponsorship award on behalf of the company. On the second day of the conference, Abdullah Suwailem, president and CEO of Petro Rabigh, made a presentation titled “Rabigh Downstream Development” in a session titled the “Development and Establishment of New Industries within the Kingdom”. Meanwhile, Mohamed Al-Mady, SABIC vice chairman and CEO, called for a national task force to be established and based on the Royal Commission model. Abdullah Al-Rabiah, an independent consultant, argued that Saudi Arabia should develop its own petrochemical market and should create and capture new markets in Africa, South America, Indonesia, India, Vietnam and other places with potential. As part of the company’s presence at the conference, Chemicals was supported by Saudi Aramco Public Affairs in building and delivering a booth, which was manned by PDPs from Chemicals and Power Systems who shared the company’s ongoing efforts in these areas.