15,000 to attend World Energy Congress in UAE

From left, Faisal Al-Dhahri, Khalifa Al-Qubaisi, Dr. Matar Al-Neyadi and Fatima addressing a press conference about the 24th World Energy Congress, which will be held from Sept. 9 to 12 in Abu Dhabi.
Updated 01 September 2019

15,000 to attend World Energy Congress in UAE

With less than two weeks to go until the 24th World Energy Congress, the UAE Organizing Committee has given an update on the number of delegates, ministers and exhibitors that will be attending the global event in Abu Dhabi.

Taking place from Sept. 9 to 12 at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), the event will see the presence of more than 15,000 attendees from the UAE and abroad including 4,000 delegates and 66 ministers. The exhibition, taking place across a space of 35,000 square meters, will feature over 200 exhibitors, representing more than 150 countries altogether. 

This year’s World Energy Congress, which will take place for the first time in the Middle East, will see more than 300 speakers among the thousands of global attendees during the four-day event.

More than 80 sessions will be held during the congress, focusing on the entire energy spectrum including oil and gas, electricity, coal, nuclear power and renewable energy, as well as transport, energy efficiency, finance, investment, consultancy and other sectors that are affected by the energy sector.

It will provide an opportunity for business leaders, decision-makers and other industry professionals to discuss the trending topics of the industry as well as taking action to deliver a sustainable future through panel discussions and sessions. 

Dr. Matar Al-Neyadi, undersecretary at the UAE Ministry of Energy and Industry and chairman of the UAE Organizing Committee, said: “The World Energy Congress has gone from strength to strength with every edition. The large attendance, the diversity of exhibitors and the comprehensive conference program for the 24th edition in Abu Dhabi signifies the importance of the congress.

“Boasting a rich history, the World Energy Congress has attracted a wide array of experts, business leaders and government officials from around the world and Abu Dhabi will be no different.

“The UAE has outlined ambitious plans in transforming the energy sector including two of the largest solar generation projects in the world and we are proud that Abu Dhabi is the first city in the Middle East to stage this prestigious event, which is another feather in our cap.”

The tri-annual event is now considered the “Davos of energy issues,” with every congress enabling hundreds of global experts to convene, share and discuss the latest trends from around the world; it has also attracted distinguished speakers over the years.

Prominent physicist and former Nobel Prize recipient, the late Albert Einstein, is among those to have shared his extensive knowledge as part of a lecture session during the Berlin World Energy Congress in 1930.


New IHG office, leadership to drive growth in Saudi Arabia

Updated 26 January 2020

New IHG office, leadership to drive growth in Saudi Arabia

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), a global hotel company, has announced plans to open an office in Riyadh in March. The news comes as IHG continues to expand its portfolio in the Kingdom in response to Vision 2030 and the opportunities it presents to the tourism and hospitality sector. The new office will also drive the performance of IHG’s existing estate further in the country and simultaneously support the expanding portfolio, as well as the company’s ambition toward leading Saudization efforts in the industry, a statement said. 

To lead IHG’s business in Saudi Arabia, Bastien Blanc has been appointed as managing director, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, effective March 1. In his current role with IHG, Blanc is responsible for leading the operations across IHG’s portfolio of hotels in the Middle East and Africa, including Saudi Arabia. He will also be responsible for driving both growth and performance for IHG in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. With extensive experience of working in the Kingdom, Blanc has been deeply ingrained into the market. He has also been leading IHG’s Saudization efforts, which he will continue to drive further in his new role. Blanc will continue to report to Pascal Gauvin, managing director, IMEA, IHG. 

IHG has also appointed Saad Al-Ahmari as director of HR and government affairs, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. Al-Ahmari joins IHG from Boeing, Saudi Arabia where he served as the head of human resources. As a senior HR practitioner and Saudi national, he is well versed with the transformation taking place in the Kingdom and has expertise in HR strategy, Saudization, change management, employee engagement, government relations, employment law, and talent management. 

HIGHLIGHT

The Riyadh office will be further supported by new roles, across functions including commercial, financial and procurement, learning and development and IT. 

Managing director Gauvin said: “Saudi Arabia is a key market for IHG in the Middle East. With Saudi Vision 2030 and the rapid socioeconomic transformation in the country, we believe the tourism and hospitality industry will continue to be presented with unparalleled opportunities. We are therefore, pleased to solidify our presence in the country with the opening of a new office in the capital city, and appoint a talented team led by Bastien, to drive our growth and performance in the market. We also have strong commitment and an ambition toward leading Saudization in the industry and the new structure will help us engage with and facilitate the development of Saudi talent.”

He added: “This is an important next step in our growth in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and is a truly significant move to solidify IHG’s position as one of the leading hospitality companies in the country.”