Gulf Energy unveils plans to launch Middle East’s first energy trading platform, International Mercantile Exchange

Published March 21st, 2006 - 06:27 GMT

In a historic move, Gulf Energy today announced that it has signed Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) with the Qatar Financial Centre Authority (QFCA) and the Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority (QFCRA), to establish the Middle East’s first dedicated energy trading platform - the International Mercantile Exchange (IMEX).


Gulf Energy is a global consortium of energy experts that works to generate high value-adding business ideas and see them implemented to the benefit energy stakeholders worldwide. Its MoU with the QFCA records its plans for cooperation on and promotion of IMEX, and the MoU with the QFCRA includes arrangements for the design and setup of the regulatory framework for the energy trading platform.


Commenting on this significant initiative, His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Ahmed bin Jassem Al Thani, Minister of Economy and Commerce in Qatar and the Chairman of Qatar Financial Centre Authority, said, “With Qatar being on track to be the leading exporter of LNG by 2010 and an important exporter of oil, the introduction of IMEX fits well in the country’s dedication to the energy sector and world-class finance.”


Phillip Thorpe, Chairman and CEO of the QFCRA said, “The QFC Regulatory Authority is a modern, fully integrated financial services regulator, operating to the highest international standards, and ideally placed to regulate the Middle East’s first energy trading platform. We are pleased to be working with Gulf Energy towards making IMEX a world class exchange by providing a framework which meets the QFCRA’s standards and regulatory objectives.”


IMEX will be located in Energy City Qatar, Gulf Energy’s maiden project. IMEX will feature some of the most technologically advanced trading platforms in the world and be regulated by the QFCRA.


Elaborating on the vision for IMEX, Mr. Esam Janahi, Chairman of Gulf Energy said, “Although the Middle East accounts for over 60% of the world’s proven oil reserves and over 40% of the world’s natural gas reserves, the region does not yet have a single energy trading platform. IMEX was conceived to bridge this gap by offering a transparent and technologically advanced energy trading platform under a well respected regulatory authority. IMEX is a natural fit into the region’s first energy business centre, Energy City Qatar. We are also exploring the possibility of collaborating with other similar exchanges in Asia and Europe to enhance the overall product service offering from IMEX.”


Hess Energy Company (HECO) and PFC Energy will be engaged by Gulf Energy as principal consultants to advise on the creation and design of the operating mechanisms for IMEX.


HECO is the energy advisory affiliate of Amerada Hess, a recognised leader in the exploration, production, refining and marketing of energy products worldwide. PFC Energy is an acknowledged leader in providing strategic advice on the competitive, economic and political aspects of the global energy business.


PFC Energy and HECO will conduct an in-depth study of existing energy and commodities exchanges, along with identifying regional commodities, their usage, existing pricing and trading patterns. Based on this study’s findings they will advise Gulf Energy on the creation and design of optimum operating mechanisms for IMEX.


‘The official launch of Energy City Qatar takes place on the 21st March 2006 under the patronage of His Highness The Emir Of The State Of Qatar Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani. Energy City Qatar’s value proposition for global players in the hydrocarbon value chain is firm and clear, and is in harmony with the State of Qatar in this time of strong growth, high levels of FDI, excellent science and educational facilities, major residential and luxurious lifestyle developments, and a strong, visionary drive to economic diversification’ Mr. Esam Janahi added.


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