Alistair Kett, PwC:
Alistair was responsible for opening PwC's first office in Iraq in 2009 and has extensive experience in the region. He expressed his passion for working with Iraqis and noted that PwC see huge potential in Iraq and continue to invest in the country. Kett noted that it was vital to look beyond the gloomy headlines: those who follow Iraq closely know there is much to be enthused about.
Mike Douglas, CEO, SKA Group:
Mike began with a compelling recollection of his first trip to Iraq. With all the bad news that had emerged from the country, how was it possible to do business there at all, let alone thrive as an organization? But going to Iraq for himself, he soon learned how his group could manoeuvre and thrive and in fact Iraq is now a vital strategic country for the $1 billion plus SKA business.
Douglas said that not only was Iraq a worthwhile investment, SKA have "consistently thrived" there. His final message? "Come to Iraq and see the situation for yourself".
Tony Hayward, Genel Energy CEO:
Genel’s CEO began by emphasising another seldom covered side of this year’s tribulations in Iraq: away from the front lines, business went ahead mostly unimpeded. In the Kurdish region, he noted how normality was gradually returning following the initial concern caused by the June ISIS offensive. Traffic was returning to normal and logistical routes into Turkey were secure. Subsequently, production at key KRG oil fields Taq Taq and Tawke was soaring and 2015 looked set to bring record output, pushing over the 500,000 bpd mark.