Haitham Al Ghais, a Kuwaiti oil and gas veteran, has formally assumed office as secretary-general of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
Al-Ghais succeeds Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, the oil cartel’s previous secretary-general, who died on July 5.
This development was announced by OPEC in a statement on Monday, following his appointment in January.
“OPEC today welcomed its new secretary-general, Haitham Al Ghais of Kuwait. Al Ghais was appointed by acclamation for the post for a three-year term at the special meeting of the OPEC conference held on 3 January 2022,” the statement reads.
“Al Ghais is a widely respected oil technocrat and OPEC figure with 30 years of experience in the oil sector.
“He advised six Kuwaiti oil ministers on market developments and has served as Kuwait’s governor for OPEC, chairman of the Declaration of Cooperation’s (DoC) Joint Technical Committee (JTC) and Kosovo Prosecutorial Council (KPC) deputy managing director for international marketing.”
According to the statement, Al Ghais, who spoke during his first town hall meeting at the OPEC secretariat, said he is willing to work with stakeholders to ensure inclusive energy in all member countries.
“It is a great honour for me to be at the helm of an organization that has been instrumental in supporting a stable and sustainable supply of oil to the world for more than 61 years,” he said.
“Throughout our history, OPEC has been at the forefront of promoting dialogue, cooperation and partnerships to achieve its mission. Today, I look forward to working with our member countries and our many partners around the world to ensure a sustainable and inclusive energy future which leaves no one behind.”
The new OPEC scribe also led management and staff in a moment of silence and prayer in memory of the late Barkindo.