A second high-level meeting of the OPEC-India Energy Dialogue was held on 22 May 2017 in Vienna, Austria.
The meeting was co-chaired by the OPEC Secretary General, HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, and HE Dharmendra Pradhan, India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas. HE Pradhan also paid a courtesy visit to the Secretary General before the meeting convened. The two discussed the short-term oil market situation. The Secretary General noted that in view of the market rebalancing “we are seeing light at the end of the tunnel.”
The two Heads of delegation also shared their thoughts on the benefits of the producer-consumer dialogue, with specific reference to the International Energy Forum (IEF). The next IEF Ministerial Meeting (IEF16) will be held in New Delhi, India, in April 2018.
In his remarks to the Meeting, HE Barkindo appreciated the bold economic reforms undertaken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He applauded the demonetisation and the General Service Tax initiatives and the way India had managed to overcome the global economic slowdown.
He also highlighted the fact that India has become a global economic powerhouse. He stated that he saw value and substance in the Energy Dialogue, particularly when looking at the ever-expanding cooperation between India and OPEC’s Member Countries. He said: “With OPEC home to over 80% of the world’s proven crude oil reserves, and with many of its Member Countries well-positioned for exports to India, it is clear that this cooperation will expand further.”
HE Dharmendra Pradhan also underlined the importance of the Energy Dialogue, as well as the cooperation between OPEC Member Countries and India with 86% of the country’s crude oil imports coming from OPEC nations. He also emphasised the importance of India’s expanding refining and petrochemicals sector.
The high-level meeting saw presentations from OPEC on short-term oil market developments, as well as the long-term energy outlook. This included some analysis on the ongoing forecast for the oil market rebalancing, the outlook for the global economy, oil supply and oil demand for the remainder of 2017, as well as medium- and long-term challenges and opportunities. The Indian delegation presented on the potential for long-term crude and gas supply cooperation between India and OPEC Member Countries.
A technical meeting of experts from OPEC and India was also held following the high-level meeting to analyse various issues, as well as look at ways and means to enhance the cooperation in the coming years.
In the technical meeting, OPEC focused on the long-term oil demand outlook in the Asia-Pacific, with a particular emphasis on India. This included an analysis of trends and drivers for future oil demand in various sectors of consumption, with a special focus on the road transportation and petrochemical sectors. India considered the country’s long-term energy demand, as well as its energy mix, in the light of energy and climate change policies.
Both parties underscored the importance of further expanding direct dialogue between Indian companies and their counterparts in OPEC Member Countries, particularly in the downstream, to help meet the ever-growing demand for oil in India.
The parties agreed to have their next high-level meeting in India in 2018.
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