Presented by Alex Forbes, Forbes Communications
Market fundamentals and technology breakthroughs herald a new dawn for GTL
Marriot Hotel Regents Park, London - 24th October 2011
Message from the workshop leader:
"The economics of gas-to-liquids are widely misunderstood. A question that many are asking is: “How can GTL be profitable when the plants cost so much to construct?” For example, Shell’s Pearl project in Qatar cost $19 billion, around four times the initial estimates when the project was first mooted. In fact, if you do the sums, and I have, Pearl will be hugely profitable at the kind of oil prices expected to prevail over the coming decade. It would still make reasonable profits at much lower oil prices. To see why, book a place on this workshop, which will major on the economics of GTL, now that the technology issues appear to have been largely worked out"
Shell could hardly have chosen a better time to bring on stream its huge Pearl gas-to-liquids (GTL) project in Qatar. Natural gas is looking increasingly abundant; oil is looking increasingly expensive. So developing a commercial-scale technology that can transform cheap gas into costly oil products is like finding a way of turning water into wine. If that sounds too good to be true, so   – in the current energy price environment – do Pearl GTL’s economics.
Clearly, if it works as planned, Pearl will generate vast sums of cash for both Shell and Qatar, under the terms of their Development and Production Sharing Agreement (DPSA). Success would also re-ignite interest in a technology that has been a long time coming – imparting new momentum to an industry that has seen its share of disappointments over the past decade.
As the industry looks to the coming decade, the fundamentals are lining up in favour of GTL as never before. Several technologies are now proven at scale, and new small-scale technologies are on their way to fruition. Natural gas is more plentiful – and thus cheaper – than previously expected, thanks to the unconventional-gas revolution, while markets for oil products are expected  to tighten. Finally, construction and finance costs have eased from their highs in 2008. For GTL, the future has never looked brighter.
This masterclass will examine the key economic drivers for GTL, summarise the progress of operational projects and those under construction, and consider what the future may hold for a technology whose time may at last have come.
It will conclude that in the current energy price environment, those projects already in operation will make very substantial profits for their owners and other stakeholders. The key challenge remains getting access to the technology and getting it to work as intended.

About your workshop leader:
Alex Forbes, Director, Forbes Communications Limited
Independent journalist and consultant Alex Forbes has been reporting on energy developments and analysing trends for three decades. His expertise covers the whole gamut of energy – including oil, natural gas, electricity, policy, regulation, climate change and the geopolitics of energy supply security. His specialisms include unconventional fossil fuels, liquefied natural gas (LNG), gas-to-liquids (GTL), nuclear power and renewables.
Alex travels more often than his partner Michelle would like because he prefers first-hand information to stuff gathered from the internet, because he likes meeting people, and because it sometimes gives him an excuse to go scuba diving in exotic locations. He frequently chairs and speaks at energy conferences.


Who should attend;

  • Business Development Director
  • Business Development Manager XTL
  • CEO
  • Commercial Advisor – EGTL
  • Commercial Managers
  • COOs
  • Geological Advisors
  • Heads of Drilling
  • Heads of GTL
  • Manager Gas Division
  • Managing Director
  • Managing Directors
  • Midstream Manager
  • Process Development Engineer
  • Project Advisors and Managers
  • Project Manager
  • Senior Scientist
  • Staff, Technology Planning Department
  • Vice Presidents and Heads of Exploration and Production


Workshop programme

13:30 Registration & Coffee

14:00 Industry Overview

Alex Forbes

Alex Forbes, Managing Director, Forbes Communications

A new dawn for gas-to-liquids (GTL)
- Gas price trends
- Oil price trends
- Construction cost trends
- Implications for project profitability
Overcoming the technology challenges
- large-scale
- small-scale
Updates on the Big 3 projects
- Oryx GTL
- Escravos GTL
- Pearl GTL
Updates on other technologies
- GTL.F1
- Nippon
- Axens
- CompactGTL
- Velocys
Factors in selecting GTL over other gas monetisation options such as pipelines, LNG and petrochemicals

14:40 GTL Technology

Alex Forbes

Alex Forbes, Managing Director, Forbes Communications

The Fischer-Tropsch (F-T) process
- Synthesising long-chain hydrocarbons from gas, coal and biomass
- A three-stage process
1. Syngas Generation
2. F-T Synthesis
3. Product upgrading
The product slate
- Gasoil (diesel)
- Naphtha
- Normal Paraffins
- Base oils for high-spec lubricants
- Speciality products 
Experience to date
- Bintulu
- Mossel Bay
- Oryx GTL
- Pearl GTL
- Escravos
The promise of emerging technologies
- Improving efficiency
- Reducing greenhouse gas emissions
- Small-scale GTL

15:20 Afternoon Tea

15:50 GTL Economics

Alex Forbes

Alex Forbes, Managing Director, Forbes Communications

How GTL economics are evolving
- Case studies
What the divergence of gas and oil prices means for GTL
- The unconventional gas revolution - a game changer for GTL?
- The long-term outlook for oil prices
The economics of developing future GTL projects: credible scenarios

16:20 Marketing GTL

Alex Forbes

Alex Forbes, Managing Director, Forbes Communications

Raising awareness – the importance of demonstration projects
Targeting the key applications
Maximising GTL revenue streams
- Realising a premium for high-quality products
The role of policy change in unlocking GTL benefits


17:00 Discussion and Questions - A review of the session

Alex Forbes

Alex Forbes, Managing Director, Forbes Communications


Marriott Regents Park

128 King Henry's Road
London NW3 3ST
United Kingdom

Marriott Regents Park

This 4 star north London hotel in zone 2 is the perfect destination for the astute business traveler as well as the leisure guest that knows how convenient north London hotels are, as a base from which to explore the city .Bond Street is just 3 stops from Swiss Cottage underground station on the Jubilee Line, so you can be shopping, exploring the sights and taking in one of London’s world-renowned West End shows in less than 15 minutes when you stay at this hotel near central London. At the same time, the hive of activity that is Camden Town, the chic shops, cafes and restaurants of Primrose Hill and ZSL’s London Zoo in Regents Park are all just a short walk from this hotel in north London.



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