Inside the Middle East's biggest oil and gas conference, and assessing a damaged post-WeWork landscape
As the US got caught up in President Donald Trump's impeachment proceedings last week, a different type of history was being made on the other side of the world. It occurred at the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition & Conference (ADIPEC), where all the world's top oil and gas executives gathered to sign a blockbuster deal.The agreement revolved around a new exchange that will enable futures trading on a highly valuable type of crude oil native to the United Arab Emirates, called Murban. The new contracts - expected to start trading in the second or third quarter of 2020 - will be hosted by International Exchange.
Chief executives from BP, Total, PetroChina, Shell, Vitol, Taiwan's PTT, Japan's JXTG, Korea's GS Caltex, and Inpex were on hand to sign up as partners in the deal. They envision the Murban becoming a new global benchmark, slotting in alongside WTI and Brent crude, with a specific focus on serving Asian markets.
Business Insider was on hand to witness the historic accord in person. Here's a first-hand account of the official announcement, the hubbub that accompanied it, as well as the global CEO summit that came after. The following day, another gathering of global executives took place, where top brass explained their backing of the deal. BI was in the room for that as well.
But ADIPEC wasn't all about the Murban exchange. There was also a major focus on innovation and the digitization of oil and gas technology. To that end, the conference had self-driving car pioneer Sebastian Thrun - the founder of Google's secretive lab called Google X - deliver a keynote address.
BI was able to sit down for a private conversation with Thrun beforehand. He shared his artificial intelligence-driven vision for the future of the oil and gas industry, and offered a glimpse into how his mind works.
To recap, here's BI's full coverage of ADIPEC:
- Inside a 'historic day' at the Middle East's biggest oil and gas conference, where all the world's top energy CEOs gathered to sign a deal that could permanently change the industry
- 4 of the world's top oil and gas executives explain why they're backing a landmark trading deal that could revolutionize the industry
- The godfather of the self-driving car shares his bold, AI-driven vision for the future of the oil and gas industry - and provides a peek into his disruptive mindset
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