Lagos — The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC has postponed its 8th International Seminar until next year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Seminar, originally scheduled for 16-17 June 2021, will now be held on 29-30 June 2022 at the Hofburg Imperial Palace in Vienna, Austria.
OPEC Secretary General, Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, said: “The OPEC International Seminar is regarded as one of the premier events on the world energy calendar and the decision to postpone follows very close consultations with many stakeholders, including our Member Countries. Though this was not an easy decision to make, our utmost priority is the safety and health of all participants. We look forward to building on our past achievements and holding an even more successful Seminar again in 2022. We thank the Hofburg Palace, the City of Vienna and the Austrian Government for their support and flexibility in facilitating this change.”
The seminar’s participants customarily include ministers from OPEC-member countries, countries participating in the ‘Declaration of Cooperation’, and other oil-producing and oil-consuming nations; heads of international organisations; chief executives of national and international oil companies; along with other industry leaders, academics, analysts, energy experts and journalists from specialised media.
OPEC has held seminars since 1969 and the first in the current series of international seminars took place in 2001.
Over subsequent decades, the OPEC seminar has increased in size and scope, covering topics such as the world economy, global finance, energy cooperation and the transition, sustainable development and the environment.
The last edition in 2018 attracted a record of more than 950 participants from over 50 nations, around 80 speakers, 60 ministers and CEOs, 19 sponsors, 20 exhibitors, and 170 journalists, analysts and photographers.
The postponement comes as travel restrictions remain in place in many countries and lockdown measures complicate the logistics of planning major international events.