Wednesday, July 6, 2022  
Weather |  Futures |  Market News |  Headline News |  DTN Ag Headlines |  Portfolio |  Crops |  Futures Markets |  Options |  Grain 
USDA Reports
Printable Page Headline News   Return to Menu - Page 1 2 3 5 6 7 8 13
OPEC Secretary-General Dies   07/06 06:29


   ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) -- The Secretary-General of the Organization of 
Petroleum Exporting Countries has died, Nigerian authorities and the oil cartel 
announced Wednesday. Only hours before his death, he'd met with Nigeria's 
president and spoken in defense of the energy industry amid increasing climate 
change pressure.

   Mohammad Barkindo, 63, died late Tuesday in Abuja, a spokesman for Nigeria's 
petroleum ministry told The Associated Press. The reason for his death was not 
immediately known. The Vienna-based oil cartel also confirmed his death, saying 
he was a "much-loved leader" of OPEC.

   His death came as a surprise to industry insiders. His second term as head 
of OPEC was set to end in three weeks on July 31. He'd held the post for six 
years since 2016.

   Barkindo's death was first confirmed in a tweet by the managing director of 
the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, Mele Kyari.

   OPEC's statement said Barkindo's last words to friends were that he was 
happy to have concluded his tenure as secretary-general, he'd served the best 
he could and that he was proud of those who'd served with him.

   Barkindo led the crude oil bloc through some of its most turbulent times in 
recent memory, including during the COVID-19 pandemic when oil prices plummeted 
due to declining demand. He helped guide the group, working to keep the 
positions of its members unified.

   OPEC's 13 member-states have 1.24 billion proven crude oil reserves among 
them, or 80% of the world's share. Of the world's total crude oil production, 
OPEC producers' share is just under 38%.

   His role representing OPEC took on even greater significance in past years 
amid a global effort to tackle climate change. Barkindo used his platform to 
advocate in favor of a bigger role for the energy industry in conversations 
about the energy transition. This positioned him firmly on the side of oil 
producers who say more investments in oil and gas are needed until the world is 
able to run on alternative forms of energy.

   "Our industry is now facing huge challenges along multiple fronts and these 
threaten our investment potential now and in the longer term. To put it 
bluntly, the oil and gas industry is under siege," he said hours before his 
death at an energy conference in Nigeria.

   Scientists and authors of U.N.-backed studies say the world needs to cut by 
more than half its production of coal, oil and gas in the coming decade to 
maintain a chance of keeping global warming from reaching dangerous levels. To 
do this, they say investments in oil and gas must stop and be rerouted to 
cleaner forms of energy.

   Barkindo's legacy, however, is perhaps most tied to his final years steering 
OPEC as the group entered into an agreement known as OPEC+ with major non-OPEC 
producer, Russia. That agreement, spearheaded by Saudi Arabia and Russia, has 
helped steady oil markets as the world emerges from the pandemic, though it has 
come under criticism amid current high oil prices and as the U.S. and other 
Western nations try to squeeze Russia's economy over the war in Ukraine. Brent 
crude has soared past $100 a barrel this year.

   OPEC member-states accounted for around 48% of all world crude oil exports 
last year. Saudi Arabia is by far the biggest exporter of crude within OPEC, 
with 6.23 million barrels per day of crude exports last year. Non-OPEC 
producer, Russia, exported 4.5 million barrels of crude last year.

   Barkindo's successor Haitham al-Ghais, a veteran of the Kuwait Petroleum 
Corporation, was set to assume the post in August.

   Born in Nigeria's eastern city of Yola, Barkindo began his career with the 
Nigerian Mining Corporation in 1982 before holding multiple roles over more 
than two decades at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, including as 
its CEO. He also served as deputy managing director of Nigerian Liquified 
Natural Gas.

   He'd led Nigeria's technical delegation to the U.N. climate change 
negotiations for years and served several terms as vice president of the United 
Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties.

   He attended university in Nigeria before earning a post-graduate degree in 
petroleum economics from Oxford University in the U.K. and an MBA from 
Washington University in the U.S.

   In his meeting in Abuja on Tuesday, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari told 
Barkindo: "Welcome back home!" according to an OPEC readout of the meeting. 
Buhari also congratulated him on his tenure at OPEC. Nigeria has been a member 
of OPEC for 50 years.

   Barkindo was set to join the Atlantic Council as a distinguished fellow next 
month, after finishing his term at OPEC. He was a frequent speaker at the 
Atlantic Council's global energy forum.

Copyright DTN. All rights reserved. Disclaimer.
Powered By DTN