By Leman Mammadova
A meeting of the National Oil Committee of Azerbaijan dedicated to the past year's activities and the forthcoming tasks was held in Baku under the chairmanship of Energy Minister Parviz Shahbazov on May 8.
Shahbazov said at the meeting that Azerbaijan may host the 24th World Petroleum Congress in 2023 and added that the role of the National Committee in this initiative is very important.
The minister stressed that great responsibility falls upon the National Oil Committee in terms of Baku’s getting support for holding this event.
Speaking about the oil production in the country, he said that so far, 2.06 billion tons of oil has been produced. In his words, 746 million tons of this volume was extracted after regaining independence. "About 770,000 barrels of oil is produced daily in Azerbaijan," he added.
The minister also pointed to the importance of Azerbaijan in the world oil market, adding that the country exports oil via the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline.
“With the start of gas production at the Shah Deniz field, Azerbaijan has also become a gas producing country. In addition, Azerbaijan will provide gas to Europe through the Southern Gas Corridor starting in 2020," he said.
In turn, Deputy Energy Minister Elnur Soltanov noted that the candidacy of the city where the 24th World Petroleum Congress will be held will be determined by secret ballot in June this year in St. Petersburg (Russia). Along with Azerbaijan, Canada, the UAE, Argentina and Kazakhstan are also nominated to host the congress.
At the meeting of the National Oil Committee, future plans and work of the committee were also discussed.
The Azerbaijan National Oil Committee was established in 2005 and in the same year became a member of the World Petroleum Council (WPC) at a congress in Johannesburg, South Africa. The main organizer of the World Petroleum Congress, being held every three years, is the World Petroleum Council, established in 1933.
The congress is an international platform for discussing important issues of the oil and gas industry and making important decisions. The Council, which brings together 65 member states, covers 96 percent of oil and gas producers and consumers worldwide. Every three years, thousands of specialists from all over the world gather at this forum in order to get acquainted with the most modern technologies of oil and gas production and methods of managing this business.
After the National Oil Committee meeting, Minister Shahbazov told reporters that since April 2019, Azerbaijan has started fulfilling its commitments under the OPEC+ agreement.
Azerbaijan agreed to cut daily oil production to 776,000 barrels as part of the OPEC+ agreement. The average daily oil production reached 793,000 barrels in January, 806,000 barrels in February and 798,000 barrels in March.
At a press conference following the meeting of the OPEC/non-OPEC Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) in Baku in March 2019, Shahbazov said that the indicators of Azerbaijan’s compliance with the OPEC+ agreement to reduce oil production will be even better.
"For two and a half years Azerbaijan has exceeded its obligations under the OPEC+ agreement. Last December, we made new commitments. We remain committed to our obligations. Following the results of the first half of 2019, Azerbaijan will completely fulfill its obligations under OPEC+. Next month there will be even better results," the minister said back then.
An agreement was reached to reduce daily oil production by 1.2 million barrels at the 5th OPEC and non-OPEC Ministerial Meeting in Vienna on December 7, 2018. Azerbaijan also supported the decision to reduce oil production and joined the agreement to support the process of world oil market regulation. As part of the agreement, Azerbaijan has reduced daily production by 20,000 barrels since January 1, 2019.
Leman Mammadova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @leman_888
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