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Challenges and developments in the NOC-IOC relationship

Speech given by Malcolm Brinded, Executive Director, Upstream International, at the Oxford Energy Seminar, 23 July 2010.

Long-term trends and recent developments increase the need for win-win partnerships between international oil companies (IOCs) and national oil companies (NOCs), says Malcolm Brinded. IOCs and NOCs have shared interests and face common challenges – from climate concerns to the end of “easy oil”. They both also have to deal with the after-effects of the global economic recession and the upsurge in unconventional gas in North America. With a growing diversity among NOCs, IOCs must adapt to create sustainable partnerships – particularly to support the growth of natural gas in power generation and to preserve the acceptability of liquid fuels in transport. An “Open Doors” approach attracts more foreign direct investment into the energy sector, allowing the transfer of know-how, the building up of local resource and supply-chain capacities, and the generation of significant economic growth to host nations.

Malcolm Brinded

It’s good to be here at the Oxford Energy Seminar again. A lot has happened since I was here last year – in the financial market, in our industry and also at Shell. But let me go back a little further in time to set the context.

Two years ago, Shell’s scenarios highlighted three key long-term trends.

Firstly, a surge in the global demand for energy as a result of population growth, increased prosperity and industrialisation. We therefore anticipate that, by 2050, humankind could be using twice the amount of energy we do today.

Secondly, greater price volatility and supply tightness. New conventional oil and gas supplies cannot be brought on stream at the same pace at which demand is growing. For that reason all forms of energy – ranging from difficult-to-produce oil and gas, to coal, nuclear and all manner of renewables – will have to be mobilised. Ways of saving energy will also have to be implemented, so that more utility can be extracted from the available sources.

And lastly, an increase in the environmental stresses. Scientists tell us that the world needs to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by mid-century, if we hope to avoid the worst effects of climate change. So the deployment of cleaner energy technologies will be encouraged through a patchwork of responses both collectively – by international, regional and national bodies – and individually – by cities, citizens and companies. Our two scenarios show how monumentally difficult that task is. Between now and 2020, CO2 emissions are largely locked in by our current infrastructure and the time it takes to deploy low-carbon energy technologies on a scale large enough to make a real difference. I’ll come back to this point in a moment.

There are a two key events that happened since 2008, however, that the scenarios did not factor in:

  • A global economic recession. The severity of the recession leads us now to believe that global economic growth will resume at a rate lower than the pre-recession long-term trend. The extent of the downshift remains uncertain, however. The huge public deficits of countries across the world, and the need to withdraw vast government stimulus packages at some point in many countries, are reminders that the path to recovery is still treacherous.
  • A surge in the volumes of “unconventional” gas entering markets, especially in North America. Over the last couple of years, the growth in this type of gas supply – chiefly from tight sandstone and shale formations – has changed the pattern of gas production and distribution – not only in the US but also throughout the world. For one thing, it has depressed gas prices in the US. That, in turn, is now triggering new and increased demand. And for another, it has freed up supplies of liquefied natural gas (LNG) for other countries. If the success story of unconventional gas can be repeated elsewhere, the long-term global supply of natural gas should improve even more.

In addition to those key events, a major resource-holding country – Iraq – is reclaiming its position on the international oil supply market. Through a carefully crafted series of open and transparent bidding rounds, the country has accelerated the redevelopment of its key oil fields, attracting a host of the world’s largest and most experienced oil companies as partners. The production targets of the newly awarded contracts total nearly 10 million barrels of oil a day – close to the current output of Saudi Arabia, the world’s number-one producer.

And even as I speak, we are witnessing another event that has repercussions throughout the industry: the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Governments, shareholding institutions and ordinary citizens have made it abundantly clear that they hold oil companies to high standards. Indeed, they may be about to draw a sharper line as to the safety and environmental risks that society is willing to bear in its quest for more energy. Regulatory agencies are also getting more directly involved in design and operational decisions that in the past tended to be left to prudent operators.

Graph 'business as usual'

I’ll have a few more words to say about the spill and its effect on the industry at the end of my presentation.

In spite of these recent events, the basic conflicting trends remain the same: the world will need perhaps twice as much energy with half the CO2 emissions. Or, to put it another way, the carbon intensity of the energy we use would have to be reduced to a quarter of what it is today.

From this tension between more energy and less CO2 arise two very different outlooks about the future of oil and the role of liquid fuels in transport.

Resource availability vs climate change

In the first outlook, the overarching theme would become the growing scarcity of oil in relation to its demand. The decline of “easy oil” and the relentless need for more energy in developing nations dominate the market. Competition for resources becomes ever more intense. As a result, traders are likely to assume that future oil prices will not drop below current prices; they may even envisage prices going up significantly in the longer term.

Given that outlook, wealthier major resource holders would be happy to to restrain production, given sufficient current income. They would want to make sure that their oil output can be sustained over many decades in order that future generations also get a share of their countries’ natural endowment. This is, in essence, what OPEC strives to achieve – and it has had a good degree of success thus far.

In the second outlook, it becomes increasingly clear over time that the remaining window for substantial oil production growth will be curtailed by ever more stringent climate policies, often aimed at displacing oil from transport. As CO2 levels approach critical levels, real climate change effects become more noticeable, and public concern grows. Producing nations begin to see that they may well be left with substantial resources still in the ground at the end of the oil era. That insight could make it increasingly likely that a race for market share will be set off, inevitably softening prices.

Two very different worlds – with hugely different consequences. But whichever of these outlooks ultimately plays out, NOCs and IOCs will face a major common challenge: make more energy available – while reducing the pressures on the environment associated with its production and use.

As we move ahead toward increasing energy availability, greater energy efficiency will prove critical – particularly in developed countries. The developed nations have an obligation to make the most of their energy as part of their contribution to fuelling the rise in living standards in the rest of the world.

Indeed, if there is to be an energy revolution, it will be on the demand side, where we can make big changes relatively quickly with the right policies and political will.

On the energy supply side, change will happen much more gradually – not because of the industry’s slowness to react, but because of the sheer size and complexity of the supply system.

History shows that it takes at least 30 years for any new energy type to gain just one percent of the global supply. This lead-time was evident in the evolution of LNG. Biofuels are reaching the one-percent mark about now, also after a quarter-century or so of development. The first big wind farms were built in the US and Denmark only 15 years ago. And wind energy is only likely to pass the one-percent mark sometime in the next decade.

There's no escaping it: the development of a secure and sustainable energy supply will proceed slower than many would wish. It will take many decades.

Nevertheless, we must deliver growing amounts of energy today – especially for people in developing nations who cannot afford to wait until tomorrow. Condemning many of the world’s citizens to energy poverty is simply not an option.

Take Asia as a microcosm of the way these trends are playing out in the world.

The Shell scenario team estimates that some 800 gigawatts of electricity-generating capacity will be built in Asia just in the next 10 years. That’s the equivalent of Western Europe’s entire installed generating capacity.

The impact on transport fuels in Asia will be equally dramatic. China overtook the USA last year as the world’s largest vehicle market, with sales of nearly 14 million cars and trucks. And there’s plenty of room for that number to grow. There are fewer than 30 cars for every thousand inhabitants in China, compared to more than 750 in the USA.

Global crude oil supply

Largely because of this marked expansion of individual mobility and the natural decline of existing oil fields, the world will need to produce an additional 40 million barrels of oil a day by 2020. Most of it will need to come from resources that haven’t even been found yet. Forty million barrels a day is about four times what Saudi Arabia produces, or 10 times what the U.K. and Norway together produce.

Although the International Energy Agency does not expect global oil production to peak before 2030, conventional oil production is projected to approach a plateau. Unconventional sources, mainly extra-heavy oil and gas-to-liquids, will take a growing share of world production.

The IEA reckons that the world will need to invest over one trillion dollars every year for the next 20 years in new energy projects. That’s the equivalent of harnessing about half of the UK’s GDP just to build energy projects.

So the challenge is daunting. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned from my career at Shell, it’s that optimism really is a powerful force.

It’s also obvious that win-win partnerships in which all parties stand to gain are the ones with the highest chance of success and the ones that have contributed the most in the past.

So how could optimistic partnerships between NOCs and IOCs develop over the next several years?

First, let me be clear: I recognise that NOCs do not need IOCs. At Shell, we have the utmost admiration for NOCs – for the skills and capabilities of their people, for their R&D programmes, and for their stewardship of national energy resources in the best interest of their countries. NOCs today are knowledgeable, capable and confident. We know very well they don’t depend on IOCs – and they can access capital in many other ways.

Nevertheless, they stand to gain from the integrated global capabilities that IOCs can bring to a partnership in three main areas:

  • developing and deploying technology and then helping to permanently transfer and embed it in NOCs;
  • widening the customer base and extending the integrated value chain; and
  • helping to build local skills and businesses.
Graph CO2 emissions

By combining forces, NOCs and IOCs really can do a lot to meet the complex energy and environment challenge. I’ll even give you some examples of how Shell is doing it now with several NOCs.

First, let’s focus a little more on the power sector as an area of NOC-IOC cooperation, before seeing how such cooperation could unfold in the transport sector.

Growth in annual CO2 emmissions

If we want to limit atmospheric concentrations of CO2 to 450 parts per million, we have a margin of only around 64 ppm left, as shown here on the right-hand side of the slide.

According to IEA forecasts, around 40% of that margin will get taken up by the emissions from coal-fired power generation in just three countries – China, India and the US – between now and 2030, if no measures are taken to abate those emissions.

So logically, the first priority has to be to reduce CO2 emissions from the power sector, because they are large, growing and originate from a manageable number of fixed emission points.

How best to do that?

The quickest and cheapest way to reduce those emissions is to burn natural gas instead of coal to generate electricity.

A modern gas plant emits only half the CO2 of a modern coal plant, and 70% less than decades-old steam-turbine coal plants, of which there are still hundreds in operation in the US and China. Many of these will be decommissioned in the next 15 years, but they should probably be scrapped tomorrow if the world really wants effective action on CO2.

In deciding what replaces all that old coal capacity, governments and utilities are beginning to realise that natural gas capacity is both faster and cheaper to install than other new-build sources of electricity. By the way, it is also much easier to link into intermittent wind or solar electricity than either coal or nuclear.

And to those who are concerned about the security of supply lines, gas is abundant enough – and its various modes of distribution are today flexible enough – to allay those concerns. According to IEA, there are enough gas resources for about 250 years at current production levels. Growing gas supplies – including the unconventional gas I mentioned earlier – in combination with new pipelines and a globalising LNG market should ensure security and long-term price stability.

Longer term, carbon capture and storage (CCS) offers even further scope for CO2 reductions. It’s the only technology capable of managing CO2 emissions from large-scale facilities, such as cement factories, refineries and fossil-fuel power plants. The IEA estimates that CCS could ultimately account for about one-fifth of the global CO2 reductions needed by 2050 – and more than half of those needed by 2100.

So what then are the challenges and opportunities for NOC-IOC cooperation in the gas sector?

I see them in three main areas:

  • the production of more non-associated gas;
  • the increase in sales of gas and gas products in liquid forms, which hugely increases the cost effectiveness of long-distance transport; and
  • the utilisation of more associated gas.

Let me quickly describe each of them in turn.

Non-associated gas

First, supplies have to be increased – particularly through technologies that unlock “difficult” gas. That includes unconventional gas in tight reservoirs and also sour gas.

Take Saudi Arabia, which is the third biggest gas reserve holder in the Middle East, after Iran and Qatar. We estimate that three-quarters of the non-associated gas in that country is found in accumulations that are sour or in tight reservoirs – or both. Shell has been exploring for gas in partnership with Saudi Aramco in the Rub al Khali area of the Kingdom. We are focussing the efforts of our 50/50 joint venture in 2010 and beyond on the sour gas resources of the Kidan geological trend.

Kuwait too has sizeable non-associated sour-gas reservoirs, but their locations are known: below the country’s Northern oil fields. These reservoirs consist of fractured tight shale and carbonate formations. The challenge for Kuwait is to develop them in an efficient and safe manner. The recently signed agreement with Shell helps to achieve this end.

For these two oil-rich Middle Eastern countries, producing more gas for electric power means a significant reduction in CO2 emissions, freeing up oil for exports. On the other hand, gas also serves as key feedstock for a growing industrial sector and provides means for enhancing oil recovery.

More non-associated gas can also be found outside of the Middle East – particularly if one widens the search to include unconventional sources. China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and Shell have announced plans to jointly appraise and hopefully develop tight gas fields in China’s Sichuan Province. That partnership follows an earlier one with PetroChina, a subsidiary of CNPC, to assess the shale gas resources in the same province.

Shell and PetroChina already operate the Changbei tight-gas field in Shaanxi Province. The field supplies 3 billion cubic metres of gas a year to Beijing and other cities in eastern China.

Global LNG market developments

Let me now consider the second area of NOC-IOC cooperation: greater deliveries of gas to markets by ship – either as LNG or GTL (gas to liquids).

The ability to liquefy natural gas and ship it to far-flung destinations has linked new suppliers to new customers, thus strengthening supply security.

Despite the difficult market we have today, global LNG demand is likely to double this decade, driven by the growing need for gas imports – in Europe, China and a host of other Asian and Middle Eastern countries that will soon begin importing LNG: Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Pakistan, Kuwait, Dubai and Bahrain, to name some.

So the LNG sector will have to continue its rapid expansion and innovation to keep pace with the growing demand.

Right now, LNG supplies are growing at the rate of around 6-8% per year – around three times the rate of natural gas overall. And the number of LNG exporters is likely to increase by nearly one-third by 2015.

At Shell, we are proud of our leadership in this field. Last year, joint ventures in which we are a partner supplied more than 30% of global LNG volumes. And we will continue to grow the global and regional LNG infrastructure we have built up in partnership with NOCs.

For example, Sakhalin II – Russia’s first offshore gas project and LNG plant – came on-stream last year. As people in our industry will appreciate, the entire integrated oil/gas project has been a huge undertaking. At the peak of construction, 25,000 construction workers were involved. They built two offshore platforms, two onshore processing plants, the LNG plant and the export terminal. They also laid two pipelines of 800 kilometres each. Over 70% of all contracts were awarded to Russian companies, over 80% of the worked hours were by Russian nationals and over 90% of the material and equipment were resourced in Russia.

We at Shell believe that Russia could become one of the world’s largest LNG exporters. There are many other countries where we could see similar transformations.

Another example is provided by Qatargas 4, a vast new LNG plant in Qatar in which we have a 30% stake. It is nearing completion this year. When finished, it will export LNG to China, Dubai and the US.

In Qatar we are also building our flagship gas-to-liquids project – Pearl GTL. When finished, it will be the world’s largest GTL plant. Currently, more than 50,000 workers from 60 nations are at work on a site the size of 350 football fields, one of the world’s largest industrial developments.

Gas-to-liquids technology will take gas into new markets. Pearl GTL will produce enough GTL fuel to fill over 160,000 cars a day and enough synthetic base oil each year to make lubricants for more than 225 million cars. Last year, we secured approval for the use of GTL kerosene blend in commercial aircraft – only the fourth time in 100 years of aviation history that a new fuel has been so approved.

Strong partnerships between NOCs and IOCs will be needed for deploying the technologies to export gas either as LNG or GTL. NOCs can also benefit through such partnerships from the existing positions of IOCs in the gas value chain – for example from Shell’s preferred supplier position in premium markets.

Associated gas

The third area for NOC-IOC cooperation is in the capturing of associated gas.

Because associated gas is tied to oil production, its supply is trickier to manage. If oil production quotas go down, then a country dependent upon associated gas can find itself short of supply.

Conversely, if oil production increases, that country must find something to do with the gas. Sometimes, for lack of an alternative, the gas is flared – burned off.

There is, however, real value in capturing associated gas instead of flaring it.

Shell Petroleum Development Company, the operating company of our joint venture with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, has been hard at work capturing associated gas to reduce flaring. Flaring has rightly been a source of concern for years there, but security and Government funding constraints have dogged progress.

I’m therefore very pleased that we have just brought a major integrated oil/gas project on-stream – the Gbaran-Ubie project. It will be capable of producing 1 billion cubic feet of gas a day from both associated and non-associated fields. That’s equivalent to about a quarter of the gas currently produced for export and domestic use in Nigeria. It will also produce as much as 70,000 barrels of oil per day.

Most of the gas will go to the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas plant in Bonny to support existing export contracts. But some of it will fuel gas-fired power plants, bringing electricity to many people in the area for the first time.

Overall, Shell and its partners in Nigeria have spent over $5 billion on associated-gas gathering facilities since 2000. When completed, they will cover more than 75% of SPDC’s production potential. And more such projects are on the way.

Iraq is another case in point. We signed a provisional Heads of Agreement with the Iraqi Ministry of Oil in 2008, setting out the commercial principles to establish a joint venture with the aim of capturing and processing natural gas in southern Iraq that otherwise gets flared.

By the end of 2009, projects jointly executed by Shell and South Gas Company had already resulted in 135 million cubic feet per day of gas and 500 tonnes per day of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) being gathered that was previously flared. And that’s even before any binding deal was in place. Those volumes represents 20% of the currently flared gas, and over a third of the current Iraqi LPG import requirements.

It also represents about 4 million tonnes per year of CO2 that are not released into the atmosphere. That’s equivalent to keeping more than 600,000 cars off the roads for a year.

Reducing carbon intensity of transport

Let me now turn to the transport sector.

According to the IEA, oil demand from transport is set to grow. Worldwide, the number of cars and trucks on the road is expected to rise from 900 million today to about 2 billion by mid-century. So demand for mobility and – by extension – oil is growing.

But, inevitably, as the remaining atmospheric CO2 headroom shrinks, pressure for lower emissions from transport will grow. Unlike the CO2 emissions of the fossil-fuel power sector, those of hydrocarbon-fuelled transport cannot directly be captured through CCS.

So the key challenge for NOC and IOCs is to preserve the environmental and societal acceptability of liquid fuels in transport.

How best to do that? By reducing the CO2-intensity of liquid transport fuels on a wells-to-wheels basis. In particular:

  • Increase the supply of sustainable biofuels: widen the customer base and extend the value chain. Shell is already the world’s largest supplier of biofuels. But we’d like to do more. We recently announced a proposed joint venture with Cosan in Brazil that will produce and distribute ethanol from sugarcane – which can deliver around 70% CO2 savings on a well-to-wheel basis when compared with conventional fuel. We are also developing technologies for advanced biofuels using new feedstocks and new processes.
  • Increase efficiency of oil production operations and refineries. At Shell, we are implementing a CO2 and energy management programme at our refining and chemicals plants. We also installed an advanced information system that helps operators improve efficiency at plants. Together, these have led to a total 2% energy saving in 2009 at our manufacturing facilities. Another example is our expansion project at the Texas Port Arthur refinery, part of the Motiva Enterprises joint venture that we have with Saudi Aramco. It will result in a near doubling of throughput with less emissions per barrel of product.
  • Leverage the combined IOC and NOC know-how and wider stakeholder relations to stimulate the policy frameworks and demonstration projects that will accelerate successful wide-scale deployment of CCS.
  • Develop fuel-saving oil products. Shell, for example, has developed gasoline blends (e.g., FuelSave) and lubricants (e.g., Helix) that to improve a car’s mileage. We also have developed energy-saving products for a country’s infrastructure – namely, road-paving materials (e.g., Shell WAM Foam Asphalt and Shell Thiopave).
  • Finally, we should become a part of the e-mobility value chain through natural gas. Low-carbon power paves the way for electric vehicles. As discussed previously, burning less coal and oil and more gas in power stations will slow down emissions growth from electricity generation.

So, I see two broad areas where there is substantial scope for cooperation between NOCs and IOCs in the face of the changes in the energy landscape:

  • supporting both associated and non-associated natural gas as well as LNG in power generation as they displace coal and oil, to reduce CO2 emissions quickly and cheaply and thereby facilitate the development of electrical transport;
  • maintaining the acceptability of liquid fuels in transport, chiefly by supporting the expansion of biofuels, efficiency and CCS.

NOCs: a diverse community

Now let’s move on to two key insights I shared with the group last year, which I believe will shape – even more now than last year – the type of relation between an IOC and an NOC.

First, IOCs must recognise that the same approach cannot be followed with all NOCs. There is no such thing as a typical NOC. NOCs differ widely in their origins, objectives and focus. These differences influence how NOCs respond to the energy challenge I explained earlier and thus determine how IOCs can play the most supportive partnership role.

For example, some NOCs are more focused on domestic resources. These are usually found in countries with large oil and gas reserves. Their primary role is to deliver economic rent from the nation’s petroleum wealth. They prefer to bring in third parties such as IOCs and service companies – for technology, operational expertise and, in some cases, capital. Increasingly they also welcome other NOCs as co-investors.

Then there are those NOCs increasingly focused on developing international resources. They aim to secure supplies for their growing domestic energy needs – possibly because their country’s national resources are not large, or are becoming depleted. These NOCs – with the strong backing of their home governments – can often be excellent partners for the long term in international joint ventures.

We are pleased to have struck such a partnership with CNPC and its subsidiaries. I mentioned earlier our co-operative projects to find and produce more gas in China. But we also have a few joint projects in the works outside of China. In March, for example, we announced an agreement to buy Arrow Energy in Australia for $3.2 billion. Upon approval of the purchase by the Australian federal court, the joint-venture operator would supply LNG from coalbed methane – a type of tight gas.

There are of course some NOCs that are truly global players. They are very similar to IOCs in terms of their business models, but retain partial government ownership. They are sometimes called the INOCs. Such companies co-operate with other IOCs chiefly in projects where innovation, cost-management and risk sharing are key. Think of companies like Petronas – a partner with Shell in Iraq and Egypt as well as in Malaysia – and StatoilHydro – partnering with Shell in Ireland as well as in Norway.

Finally, let’s recognise that, when NOCs focus for decades on their own national petroleum resources, they develop highly advanced technical and commercial skills. For example, Russian companies are accustomed to sub-arctic and arctic conditions and technology. That’s their area of expertise.

In Shell, we try to understand differences among NOCs – not just in terms of resources and assets, but in terms of history, company culture, ambitions and aspirations. We need to understand these aspects to determine how we can best adapt what we have to offer to meet their needs and be their partner of choice.

The value of Open Doors

As we look towards the future, I strongly believe that stability in our industry will be greater if commercial entities are allowed the freedom and trust to find the most cost-effective solutions.

Although it is often overlooked by nationalistic extremists, the evidence suggests that countries with an “Open Doors” attitude to NOC-IOC partnership attract much more foreign direct investment into their energy sectors.

In practice, this means more exploration wells are drilled, reserves grow more quickly, production grows faster and is maintained at higher levels, more energy is freed up for exports, and more revenue flows to the national exchequer.

Here are a couple of examples – in Qatar, proven reserves are now around five times what they were in 1990. In Angola, nearly 10 times. In both countries, production is growing very rapidly – and foreign oil and gas sector investment averages around $10 billion a year in each case. Both are countries with a relatively Open Doors approach to IOC investment and technology.

Investment and reserves growth are considerably less in some other countries.

So I do think that if we let partnerships flourish, we could see some really positive surprises in coming years in the many countries that have yet to realize their full productive potential.

The Deepwater Horizon

Let me now end by saying something about the importance of health, safety and the environment (HSE) as a technology theme for IOC-NOC partnerships.

As the Deepwater Horizon incident has shown, we can never take HSE for granted. The industry must incorporate all applicable lessons from the incident into well design and drilling procedures. We also have to be better prepared in the event of a major deep-water blowout.

To that end, Shell and three other major Gulf of Mexico operators have just announced that they will immediately start the design, procurement and construction of equipment to improve the industry's capability to contain an underwater blowout. The four sponsors will form a non-profit organization – the Marine Well Containment Company – to operate and maintain the system. Other Gulf of Mexico operators will be encouraged to participate in the new organization and support the readiness of this system.

The industry must rebuild trust in order to demonstrate that it can produce energy in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. The demand for more energy compels us to continue developing deep-water fields. We at Shell began reinforcing our deep-water well design and safety procedures in 2007, when it became clear that we would be moving into ultra-deep water around the world.

HSE will continue to be a central component of our partnerships with NOCs. Shell is sharing our continually expanding knowledge in this area with many of our partners and host governments. And of course the demand for this has been greater than ever in the last three months.

To sum up

So, in summary, demand for oil is expected to rise. More of it has to be supplied in the short to medium term.
But, longer term, climate regulations are expected to become tougher and put pressure on liquid fuels. To maintain space for liquid fuels over the longer term, we need to work hard on their environmental acceptance by promoting efficiency and biofuels.

For the same reason, we need to work hard to reduce CO2 emissions from the power sector through increased reliance on natural gas now and CCS later – and do what we can to support carbon pricing and legislation.

Through natural gas, our industry becomes an integral part of the E-mobility value chain. The role of natural gas will thus be crucial for our industry and society.

All of these challenges will strengthen the links that bind NOC and IOCs and establish new ones. And together we can then move the world to a sustainable energy future.

Thank you.