The Forum Highlights
‘Fueling New Markets’
There were many highlights of the two and a half day sessions in Marrakech, but most notably the roundtable ‘Fuelling New Markets’ which covered a wide range of topics. The panel featured discussions on the growth potential in Morocco and Nigeria as well the potential for growth in developed, mature markets such as the US which are dealing with gradually decreasing consumption. There was a general agreement among the panelists that despite the challenges the industry faces there are reasons to be optimistic about the future.
A Wide Range of Sessions
Other sessions on the Wednesday covered ‘Back to the Future’ where chair Philip Shaw opened this first session which focused on the future and what the LPG industry might look like in ten years’ time. It was noted that ten years ago the US was a net importer of LPG and is now the world’s largest exporter, and so trying to predict the future has its challenges. The second session ‘Safety First’ indicated that HSE management systems are critical in environments of change, development and growth when the risks are always higher, such as the case of Africa. Panagiotis Haritopoulos the chair of the session stressed the importance of safety, referring to a new concept of “chronic unease”. Session 3 ‘Seizing the Potential’ opened the Thursday programme featuring a number of engaging presentations focusing on growth potential in different markets and sectors. From LPG for power generation in Myanmar, to ground-breaking communications in Brazil, to agricultural applications in the US, Autogas in Morocco and a whole suite innovative programmes that have unleashed unprecedented growth in India. The ‘Harnessing Diversity’ session studied aspects of diversity in the LPG industry. Final session of the day ‘Unlocking Africa’ was dedicated to looking at the latent potential that exists for growth in Africa. With discussions covering market conditions and changes in Nigeria, Cameroon and Morocco the session sought to understand what were the bottlenecks on ramping up strong growth in Africa.
The Global Technology Conference & The LPG for Development Summit
Among other highlights was the Global Technology Conference 2017 which took place on Tuesday afternoon and where cutting edge innovation was showcased. The 2017 innovation awards winning team: Begas Motor/Repsol and the two runners up: Envirofit and Kopagas were presented by James Rockall, CEO of the WLPGA. Also on Tuesday afternoon the LPG for Development Summit, sponsored by the Global LPG Partnership and supported by La Fédération de L’Energie, was kicked off by a rousing keynote by Rachel Kyte, CEO, Sustainable Energy for All and Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General. Speaking to an audience of over 200 delegates, Ms Kyte challenged the industry to reach the three billion people today who do not have access to clean cooking fuels. SEforALL and WLPGA have signed an agreement that makes WLPGA a Knowledge Partner of SEforALL to enhance knowledge exchange and solutions related the following aims: Heat Maps to Advance Action on Clean Cooking Solutions; Tracking Finance for Energy Access; Sharing Stories of Success; and Mobilising Women in Energy.