It's a privilege to be here in Beijing to talk about our industry and to honor the memory of Thomas Dewhurst, the father of the World Petroleum Congress.
Mr. Dewhurst passed away in 1973. So he never witnessed the Arab oil embargo of that year or what happened to oil prices in the years that followed. If he were with us today, I think he would be proud that our industry has spent the 1990s learning how to be successful without high oil prices-and proving we don't need high oil prices in order to grow the industry.
I'm proud of what we have achieved. But I'm just as proud of what we have contributed. Flat oil prices have provided tremendous counterinflationary benefits for people and businesses ail over the world. And our industry, in turn, has been a beneficiary of the global economic expansion.
Ten years ago, my predecessor at Chevron, George Keller, told the World Petroieum Congress in Houston that he had ‘never seen tougher times’ in all his 39 years in the oil business. He observed that in early 1986, crude oil lost half its value, and spotmarket prices for Arab light fell as low as $10 per barrel. And he suggested that the best thing for the future would be a period of oil-price stability-not too low and not too high.
I doubt that even George knew then how right he was about our industry's ability to respond to stable prices. And I think we can all agree: Even though the last 10 years were difficult, they have prepared us well for the next 20.
ON THE THRESHOLD OF GROWTH As a result, we all share an enormous anticipation for growth. We want growth in Canada and Kuwait, at Bombay High and in Bakersfield, at Kutubu and Malongo, around the Persian Gulf and in the Pearl River Mouth Basin. Growth is what we promise our customers, stockholders and governments.
Venezuela wants to double its oil production by 2006. Statoil wants to add 200000 barrels per day outside Norway by 2005. By the year 2000, Petrobras seeks a 50 percent increase in crude production and Ecopetrol aims to boost production to 1 million barrels per day. Also by 2000, LUKoil plans to invest in new production at twice today's spending level.
Meanwhile, BP wants to grow production 60 percent in the next 10 years.
China has new deals with Kazakhstan, Venezuela and Iraq-plus an alliance with Agip. They're also looking for onshore growth at home through ventures like the deep exploration project with Chevron at the Shengli Field. I think Petroleum Intelligence Weekly said it best when it called China ‘a new star on the world oil stage.’ As this congress has shown, we are today more complex, dynamic and diverse than ever before. But more than anything else, we are more driven, because we have every r