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30 May 2022

OPEC holds special workshop on climate change

Vienna, Austria, 30 May 2022--The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) hosted the Fifth Technical Workshop on Climate Change under the theme “The first global stocktake under the Paris Agreement: challenges and opportunities for energy-exporting developing countries.”

The Workshop was held ahead of OPEC’s 21st Coordination Meeting on Climate Change planned for tomorrow, 31 May 2022, and COP27 scheduled for November 2022 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt.

In his remarks, OPEC Secretary General, HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, highlighted the importance and timeliness of the Workshop given recent developments in climate change discussions.

On the Workshop’s key topic, Barkindo stressed the need to remain cautious, pointing out that developing countries are heavily impacted by climate change, as well as the energy transition. He emphasized that the principles of equity, historical responsibility and ‘common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities’ should be observed during the process.

Commenting on recent developments, the Secretary General said oil producers have been receiving mixed messages: on one hand, they are being asked to increase production to mitigate the recent rise in inflation and support economic recovery, at the same time, they face declining investment that hinders further development in the oil industry.

The Secretary General underscored the importance of investment to ensure security of energy supplies, noting that an investment of $11.8 trillion is required to 2045 in oil’s upstream, midstream and downstream sectors to meet rising energy needs, referencing OPEC’s World Oil Outlook 2021. He further indicated that total primary energy demand is projected to increase by 28% in the same period.

A number of delegates and experts attended the event, including representatives of OPEC Member Countries, non-OPEC nations participating in the Charter of Cooperation, the Organization’s international energy dialogue partners, the OPEC Fund for International Development, as well as leading industry analysts. Delegates from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretariat, the Third World Network, the Like-Minded Developing Countries Group and the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI) were also present.

Albara Tawfiq of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia moderated the event.

Presentations and deliberations centred on a wide range of important topics, including the Paris Agreement and its operationalization, the energy transition, environmental efforts in the context of sustainable development, energy poverty eradication, challenges related to finance as well as the development and transfer of technology, capacity-building gaps, and mitigation and adaption capabilities.

First held in October 2017, the Workshop serves as an interactive platform for active engagement and insight exchange, with the aim to help build mutual understanding, enhance open dialogue and promote international cooperation between industry stakeholders.