Inaugural event in Istanbul

APPEX Regional Starts Strong

Contributors: Ciaran Larkin

Nearly 200 attendees from 29 countries attended the inaugural APPEX Regional 2012 event, held Nov. 8-9 in Istanbul, Turkey, and organized in association with Turkey’s National Oil Company, TPAO.

The participants came together to make deals and discuss challenges relating to the regional exploration of eastern Europe, the eastern Mediterranean region, the former Soviet Union and northern Iraq.

The event was built on the success of the annual APPEX Global conference in London, an established forum for those looking to build partnerships and promote prospects for exploration and production all over the world.

The inaugural APPEX Regional venue was Istanbul’s Ceylan Intercontinental Hotel. Tankers passing through the Bosphorus strait were clearly visible from the upper floors, emphasizing the region’s position as a hub of activity for the oil and gas industry.

“TPAO was delighted to be the key sponsor of the first ever Regional APPEX event held in Istanbul, (which) brought together the right people from the region and beyond,” said Mehmet Uysal, TPAO chairman and president. “The excellent topical speaker sessions were invaluable and the networking opportunities were highly useful – and combined with the established APPEX format, ensured the deal making was a more straightforward process.”

The program itself was split geographically, starting with a broad focus on central and eastern Europe and then diverging into specific sessions on the Black Sea, Caspian Sea, northern Iraq, the former Soviet Union and east Mediterranean.

Highlights included:

Tony Hayward, CEO of Genel Energy, gave an account of his company’s exploration activities in Kurdistan and put forward a timeline for oil supply to Turkey.

Alex Jackson, political risk analyst for Menas Associates, spoke about maritime border issues in the Caspian Sea, providing an expert legal perspective on the prospects for diplomatic confrontation between countries that are building naval capacity in the region.

Lilit Cota, director of exploration projects in southeast Europe for INA, gave a presentation on offshore oil and gas exploration in Croatia with an emphasis on the Adriatic Sea, in particular, as well as additional information on the challenges of operating in a new legal environment.

A unique aspect of APPEX is the popular prospect forum, which gives independent oil companies an opportunity to pitch current exploration opportunities to the audience. APPEX Regional 2012 featured a wide range of prospects from places such as Italy, Tunisia, the Sicily channel, Albania, the Arabian Sea and, of course, Turkey.

A gala celebration dinner organized by TPAO was held the final day, and the attendees’ feedback was encouraging, including these comments:

  • “Participating in APPEX was really a pleasure for me. I had opportunities to listen to relevant presentations and meet a lot of experts.”
  • “Thanks for the excellent organization and for hosting us in Istanbul.”
  • “It was thoroughly enjoyable and useful, and all the delegates I spoke to about it said the same. Looking forward to next year’s event already!”

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Regions and Sections

Regions and Sections Column - Carol McGowen
Carol Cain McGowen is the development manager for AAPG's Regions and Sections. She may be contacted via email , or telephone at 1-918-560-9403.

Ciaran Larkin is a conference producer for AAPG’s London office.

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Regions and Sections is a regular column in the EXPLORER offering news for and about AAPG's six international Regions and six U.S. Sections. News items, press releases and other information should be submitted via email or to: EXPLORER - Regions and Sections, P.O. Box 979, Tulsa, OK 74101. 

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