The TotalEnergies deal with Iraq includes clean energy aspects that are a step in the right direction for the country to develop a more sustainable economy, but the focus is still on oil and gas.
Non-Resident Fellow, AGSIW; Contributing Editor, Middle East Economic Survey; Fellow, Energy Institute
Kate Dourian is a non-resident fellow at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, a contributing editor at the Middle East Economic Survey, and a fellow at the Energy Institute. Previously she was the regional manager for the Middle East and Gulf states at the World Energy Council, as well as the programme officer for the Middle East and North Africa in the Global Energy Relations Division of the International Energy Agency since September 2015. Her role included building relationships between the IEA and the governments of several Middle East and North Africa countries, using the extensive contacts that she accumulated during three decades spent in several Middle Eastern and North African countries as a journalist and energy analyst. Dourian was actively involved in the discussions that led to Morocco becoming an IEA Association country and the joint work program for which she raised funds from IEA members. She also helped write and edit the Middle East and North Africa sections of several IEA publications and contributed to the supply section of the Oil Market Report. She made presentations on behalf of the IEA in various capitals, most recently at the IEF Ministerial in New Delhi in April 2018. Dourian is often consulted on Middle Eastern matters by banks, financial institutions, and oil and gas companies. She also served as the IEA’s representative on the executive board of the International Energy Forum.
Dourian joined the IEA from the Middle East Economic Survey where she was a senior editor covering energy-related developments in the Middle East for the weekly from 2013-15. She was also responsible for compiling the monthly OPEC survey for MEES, which is one of the secondary sources used by OPEC.
From 2000-13, Dourian was the editor in chief for the Middle East for oil price reporting agency Platts, now a division of S&P Global, based in Dubai. She was also the general manager of McGraw-Hill International. Additionally, she served as a member of the OPEC reporting team and was one of the reporters assigned to compile the OPEC production numbers. While in Dubai, Dourian served as a board member of the American Business Council.
From 1983-2000, Dourian was a correspondent and then a senior editor at Reuters, serving in a number of postings including Beirut, Nicosia, London, and Rabat. She joined the energy desk in 1992, covering the Brent crude market and OPEC meetings. Prior to joining Reuters, Dourian worked as a foreign correspondent for the Associated Press, based in Beirut, Lebanon from 1981-83.
Dourian has been a speaker and moderator at international conferences and has made many radio and television appearances, discussing energy and geopolitics on a number of platforms in English, Arabic, and French on BBC, CNN, Al Arabiya, CNBC, and Al Jazeera English, and has been quoted extensively in several publications.
Uncertainty hangs over energy markets as Washington calls on OPEC+ to open the taps, and the IEA warns of coming oil supply surplus.
An OPEC+ deal, which was close to being within reach, collapsed over a dispute between the two Gulf allies, jeopardizing the interests of all constituents and leaving consumers at the mercy of market volatility.
Iraq’s deal with Masdar offers hope for Baghdad’s renewable energy agenda and for alleviating electricity shortages that have long plagued the country.
OPEC and its Russian-led allies stick to their planned oil production strategy, issuing words of caution regarding the strength of the demand recovery.
Oil prices shrugged off concerns over India, topping $70 per barrel for benchmark Brent crude in response to improved market fundamentals and drawdowns in global oil inventories.
After more than 25 years of working alongside international oil company giants, Qatar Petroleum has the technical capability and expertise to manage its own gas business. But it is unlikely to end all its partnerships.
A $7 billion deal with French oil major Total could provide a lifeline for Iraq’s fragile economy.
Saudi Arabia and Russia appear to be on the same page now, but OPEC+ will have to consider the impacts of its market management policies if it wants to avoid the pitfalls that have contributed to oil price volatility in the past.
OPEC+ producers seem to have adopted a wait-and-see attitude, but as maintaining production cuts becomes more difficult for the smaller producers, they may be tempted to cash in while prices are high.