Energy sector a most important source of economic growth, says Albanian PM

Prime Minister Edi Rama inaugurated the Albania Oil, Gas & Energy 2015 Summit on 17th-18th March at the Sheraton Tirana Hotel by giving the Welcome Address. He stated that the energy sector is seen by the Government as one of the most important sources of economic growth of the country.

Following his speech, Energy Minister Damian Gjiknuri announced that there are still 13 unexplored onshore and offshore oil blocks in Albania, which the Government aims to offer to private sector investors. He added that the Albanian Government will “ensure a transparent and competitive process to attract serious companies and investors that can afford exploration and production activities.” Albania aims to increase its extraction to two million tons and its domestically refined crude to 700,000 tons this year, the Energy Minister said.

International Research Networks, Global Summits Organiser, was the host of this very high-level Summit with the exclusive attendance of His Excellency the Prime Minister of Republic of Albania, Edi Rama; the Minister of Energy and Industry of Albania, Damian Gjiknuri; and the Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Entrepreneurship, Arben Ahmetaj.

The Summit attracted more than 200 delegates from international oil, gas and renewables companies, including current and potential operators in the country, as well as Government representatives and bodies. Amongst the companies in attendance were: Aggreko, AKBN, Albpetrol, Alma Petroli, Armo Refinery, Bankers Petroleum, BB Energy, BP, Dana Petroleum, Devoll Hydropower, Eagle LNG, Edison, Eni, Ernst & Young, ExxonMobil, Gas Plus International, Hunt Oil, KUFPEC, Management Force Group, National Oilwell Varco, Noble Energy, OMV, Petrobras, Petromanas, Polyeco, Repsol, San Leon Energy, Shell, Sigal Uniqa Group Austria, Spectrum, Su-Yapi Engineering, Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), Weatherford, and many more.

During the first morning, major operator in Albania and Lead Sponsor of the event, Bankers Petroleum, represented by their General Manager and VP, Loni Cobo, presented on their operations and presence in Albania, stating that they are the firmest supporter of the Ministry’s plans and actions.

The highlight of the event, announced by the Prime Minister, was the privatisation of Albpetrol, details of which were presented by Endri Puka, showing the high value and importance of Albpetrol.

Another announcement was made by the main E&P consortium in Albania, composed by the event’s Platinum Sponsor, Petromanas, and Gala Dinner Sponsor, Shell. They declared that they will start drilling the third well in the Shpirag area within 2015, after the first two wells have confirmed oil reserves.

TAP, Elite Speaking Sponsor, supported the event with a detailed presentation on the ins and outs of the most important pipeline for the region, by showing the roadmap to drive forward with important deadlines and strategic plans.

SOCAR, the Azeri gas giant, was also there to speak about their thoughts on the important Gas Master Plan to be implemented in order to set the grounds of an integrated gas infrastructure and market in Albania. The Summit has also provided the audience with the opportunity to discuss the new key role of Albania for Europe’s energy security.

Additionally, a strong outlook on Albania’s developed refining sector, was given by the Summit’s Lunch Break Sponsor, ARMO Refinery’s representative Mr Christophe Darbord.

So far, Albania’s energy security has been 100% dependent on hydropower energy, as Devoll illustrated with their presentation, however the Ministry will now take full advantage of Albania’s hydrocarbon production, and gasification of the country through TAP and Eagle LNG. They will diversify their resources.

To do so, as the PM, Economy and Energy Ministers discussed, investment is needed, both from national majors as well as from foreign institutes or companies, either already familiar with Albania or new but willing to invest in the immense potential of the country.

The two-day Summit also featured key presentations from Polyeco and Ernst & Young. At the same time, the several coffee breaks offered by Weatherford have fostered private business discussions in parallel with the main talks.

Official Exhibitor Sponsors of the Summit included Aggreko, Management Force Group, NOV/FluidControl and Sigal Uniqa Group Austria.

The event was also supported by the National Agency of Natural Resources of Albania (AKBN), Albania Energy Association, the Foreign Investors Association of Albania, the Albanian Centre for Energy Regulation & Conservation, Cedigaz, the British Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Albania, the German Association of Industry and Trade in Albania (DIHA) and the Albania International Chamber of Commerce. IRN donated a substantial amount of the Summit proceedings to its Charity Partner, Down Syndrome Albania.

More information on the second edition of the Albania Oil, Gas & Energy Summit next year is available at, or upon subscription to IRN newsletter.