UOG 2014 – A huge success and Israel’s 1st truly international oil & gas Conference and Exhibition

We would like to thank everyone who participated at UOG 2014. The event was a huge success, which would not have been possible without the support of our delegates, exhibitors and sponsors.

UOG 2014 was attended by delegates from all over the world, including USA, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Angola, Romania, Hungary, United Kingdom, Germany, Argentina, Guatemala, Turkey, Switzerland, Israel, Czech Republic, Aberdeen, France, Ireland, Russia, and Mexico, making UOG 2014 Israel’s first truly international oil and gas conference and exhibition. International delegates learnt about how they can get involved in developing Israel’s new oil and gas industry.

You can see photos from the event on the UOG website here and on our Facebook page.


The conference was opened with an inspiring speech by Harold Vinegar (Former Chief Scientist of Shell, Chief Scientist, Genie Oil & Gas), who gave an overview of the history of oil and gas in Israel and introduced a new technology which could potentially exploit Israel’s vast onshore oil reserves. This was followed by Uri Aldubi, Chairman of the Association of Oil & Gas Exploration Industries in Israel.

The opening ceremony and keynotes were followed by the session ‘The Current Market in Israel’, moderated by Peter Britze, Head of the Department of Reservoir Geology, the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland. Speakers included Dr Michael Gardosh (Head of Geology and Geophysics, Israel Ministry of Energy), Dr Yuval Bartove (Chief Geologist, Genie Oil & Gas) and Gal Hershkovich (Former Head of Budgets, Israel Ministry of Finance.)

Lunch was followed by the session ‘The Role of International Companies in Developing the Israeli Market’. The session was moderated by David Ronn (Partner, McGuireWoods LLP) and was opened by a video address by Texas Railroad Commissioner, Barry Smitherman, who is responsible for regulating the Texas oil and gas industry. Barry drew on what lessons Israel can learn from Texas, one of the world’s leading energy hubs. Other speakers included Mehmet Ogutcu (Board Member of Genel Energy and Former Global Director, BG Group), Binyamin Zomer (Israel Country Manager, Noble Energy), Matthias Meister (Product Development Manager, Baker Hughes) and Gheorghe Calburean (CEO, Dafora Group, Romania).

Day 1 concluded with the session ‘Oil & Gas Developments in Israel’. Speakers included Constantine Blyuz (Deputy Director, Israel Natural Gas Authority), Avri Shefler (CEO, Bipol Energy), Gina Cohen (Natural Gas Expert) and Kul Karcz (VP Exploration, Delek Drilling and Avner Oil Exploration).


Day 2 began with the session ‘Petroleum Regulations’. This session gave an introduction the legal and regulatory framework of Israel’s oil and gas industry, and how it is likely to change in the years ahead as the industry develops, moderated by Robert Amsterdam (Founding Partner, Amsterdam & Partners LLP). Speakers in this session included Michal Franco (Consultant in the Natural Gas Industry), Dr Ruth Dagan (Partner, Herzog, Fox & Neeman), Tzvika Nemeth (Partner, Agmon Hacohen Rosenberg) and Guest Panelist Gal Hershkovich. This session was followed by ‘The Future of Oil & Gas in Israel’, with Clare Freeman (President & CEO, Texas-Israel Chamber of Commerce), Dr Harold Vinegar, Matthew Hagopian (Global Co-Head of Energy, Linklaters) and Daniel Berkove (Senior Associate, IHS.)

Day 2 concluded with a special SPE Tel Aviv Induction Ceremony presented by Matthias Meister, the SPE Regional Director for South, Central and East Europe & Product Development Manager, Baker Hughes. This was followed by a lively networking reception in the Exhibit Hall, where conversation and Israeli wine were both flowing and international partnerships were made.


We were honoured to have His Excellency Caspar Veldkamp, the Ambassador of the Netherlands to Israel, open the day with a keynote speech. His Excellency discussed how Israel can learn from Dutch companies and the potential to build relationships between Dutch and Israel companies in the natural gas sector. The Ambassador’s speech was followed by the ‘Keeping Up with Technology’ panel, with speakers including Benjamin Thoma (Marketing Director, Global Key Accounts, GE Oil & Gas), Serge Rueff (Past Director, Society of Petroleum Engineers), Peter Hojlund Hviid (International Sales Executive, Oil and Gas, SystemTeknik A/S), and Gil Shaki (Director, Oil & Gas, Chief Scientist’s Office, Israel Ministry of Economy).

The conference concluded with the final session ‘Israel Oil & Gas Security and Strategy’, moderated by Middle East Expert for Press TV and Sky News, Geoffrey Ben-Nathan. This was a lively panel with Vice Admiral Eliezer Marum (Former Chief of Israel’s Navy), Ariel Ezrahi (Energy Adviser, Office of the Quarter Representative Tony Blair) and Amir Foster (Partner, Foster Consulting Group). The session was very interesting, with Ariel Ezrahi also pointing to opportunities in developing offshore resources in the Palestinian Territories.


UOG 2015

Universal Oil & Gas are excited to officially announce UOG 2015, The Annual International Oil & Gas Conference and Exhibition in Israel taking place next year.

If you would like to participate at UOG 2015, please register your interest here.

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