1 March 2023: Wednesday


Opening video and welcome by Emcee:

Alaa Al Lawati



Welcome remarks:

Eng. Abdulrahman Al-Fageeh

CEO (A), SABIC and Chairman, GPCA


Keynote address:

Talal Al-Awfi

Group CEO, OQ


The looming macroeconomic outlook for 2023 and its expected impact on the chemical industry

The use of chemicals as input in over 96% of all manufacturing makes them an indispensable part of the global economy and highly sensitive to changes in macroeconomic conditions. After record highs in 2022, leading analysts are expecting inflation to ease in 2023 and this will negatively impact commodity markets and demand, ultimately leading to rationalization in chemicals demand. An uncertain macroeconomic outlook and deglobalization are among the top issues on the minds of leading CEOs and investors as they plan for 2023. In this session we will explore:

  • Oil price forecasts and key risks for the chemicals sector?
  • Regions that are most exposed to risk and impact on capital expenditure as well as cash flow within the chemicals sector
  • Consequential impact on the industry’s ambitions towards sustainability and decarbonisation
  • The need for investing in emerging technologies, planning your strategy for 2023 and beyond (immediate and long term)

Presentation by:

Rachid Majiti

Senior Partner, McKinsey


Leadership dialogue 1: Heralding a new era in Int. Trade – GCC, Africa, and Asia

The economic relationship between the Gulf Cooperation Council states, the countries of East Asia and Africa have grown in significance in recent years. Based on the complementarity of their economic structures and comparative advantage, agreements are cementing the long-term economic ties between these regional blocs. While energy exports continue to be a key driver of GCC-emerging Asia trade, non-oil trade and investment is also strengthening, with economic and social reforms in the Middle East attracting foreign investment from Asia. Over the past decade, the UAE has emerged as one of the largest investors into Africa among the GCC states, and is the fourth-largest investor globally into Africa—after China, Europe and the United States. Saudi Arabia—another big investor into Africa—has also made significant investments in energy and mining projects, and particularly into Africa’s agribusiness, in response to growing food security concerns in the region. Through this panel we will address:

  • The economic and geopolitical implications of closer Gulf-Asia links and the levers at play for deepening economic relations between the blocs
  • Benefits of GCC Free Trade Agreements in the Chemical Industry
  • Priority areas in strengthening trade links between the regions

Teaser Presentation and Moderation by:


Tim Figures

Associate DirectorGlobal Trade and Investment, BCG

Moosa Al Moosa

Country President – KSA, The Dow Chemical Company

Ahmad Al Saleh

Global Business Director, Ethylene Glycol, EQUATE

Dr. Evar Umeozor, Ph.D., P.Eng.

Research Fellow, Oil & Gas Program, KAPSARC


Coffee and networking break


Leadership dialogue 2: Pathways for transformation and the transition to net-zero

The leading challenge facing humanity – cutting carbon emissions to net zero to stave off the most disastrous effects of global warming – will require building energy systems based on energy sources that are clean, dependable and affordable. While the chemical industry is an enabler for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, it is also the third-largest greenhouse gas (GHG) emitting sector and the largest consumer of fossil fuels among industrial sectors. To avoid catastrophic consequences of global warming, industrial sectors are developing roadmaps towards net-zero GHG emissions by 2050, including using renewable energy sources, improving efficiency, and switching to innovative low-carbon production routes. We need to identify areas of synergy and work towards building a collaborative and systematic growth environment in coordination with associated external stakeholders, such as policy makers, suppliers, consultants and financial institutes.  This strategic panel will focus on:

  • Provide insights into the planning of global and regional net-zero-emission strategies for the chemical industry
  • Challenges faced and how can we build on existing infrastructure
  • Hydrogen’s vast potential to become a critical part of a more sustainable and secure energy future
  • Policy and technology innovation required and immediate, pragmatic steps to foster hydrogen’s development

Teaser Presentation and Moderation by:


Oliver Gawad

Director – Industrial Strategy and Sustainability, dss+

Najla Al Jamali

Chief Executive Alternative Energy, OQ

Mark Dickson

Global Head of Energy Transition and Decarbonisation, dss+

Dr. Preeti Jain

Global Director – Policy, Chemicals, & Carbon Solutions, LanzaTech

Dietmar Siersdorfer

MD, Siemens Energy Middle East


Closing remarks:

Dr. Abdulwahab Al Sadoun

Secretary General, GPCA


Lunch and prayer break