Another major man in the energy sector – particularly the oil sector – is Turkish businessman Mehmet Ogutsu. Through its own discussion circles, the London firm owned by this businessman serves as a relay for Western investors wanting to establish themselves in the energy sector in Central Asia, especially in Norsultan.
The current chaotic situation in Kazakhstan is of particular concern to the former Turkish diplomat turned business advisor. At the head of his advisory firm and investment bank at Chelsea Global Resources Partners, Ogutçu worked for a decade as a facilitator of oil contracts in Central Asia, specifically Kazakhstan, on behalf of most Western oil companies, including France’s TotalEnergies, US Chevron, Italy’s Eni and Britain’s Shell.
To do this, Ogutçu can count on the meetings obtained thanks to the discussion clubs he founded. After the Bosphorus Energy Club in 2014, businessman founded the London Energy Club five years later, with the support of Briton Alistair Watson – a former military man, now president of consultancy Alistair Watson – and conference founder Fiona Watson, organizer of Afion Media. These panel discussions attract some of the big names in the energy sector who are keen to share their contacts. Members of the clubs’ advisory committees are, in particular, the former US Secretary of Energy, Bill Richardson, the former CEO of Chinese oil group Sinopec, Fu Chengyu, and the former Qatari trade minister and founder. Mohajil Holding Group Mohammed bin Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani.
Ogotsu was previously responsible for international investments by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and from 2005 to 2012 was Director of International Affairs for Shell, then known as British Gas Group, for which he worked in Kazakhstan as part of the exploitation of the Karachaganak gas field. Ogotsu represented the interests of the British group when the field was the subject of arbitration over the distribution of profits with the government of Nursultan Nazarbayev, after negotiating in 2010 with the then Minister of Oil and Gas, Swat Minbayev.
Karachaganak is still jointly managed by Shell, Eni and Chevron, as well as Russia’s Lukoil and Kazakhstan’s KazMunayGas Group, through the joint venture Karachaganak Petroleum Operations, which has been run by former Eni Giancarlo Ruiu since June 2021.
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