Calgary selected by World Petroleum Council to host oil and gas forum in 2023

Calgary has been selected to host the World Petroleum Congress in 2023, beating out four other global cities in voting that took place in St. Petersburg, Russia.

The World Petroleum Council selected Calgary to host its global oil and gas forum in a fourth ballot early Sunday, where the other remaining contender was Baku, Azerbaijan.

Held once every three years, the congress attracts industry and government leaders from around the world including government heads of state and ministers of energy.

Mayor Naheed Nenshi, who was in St. Petersburg for the vote, said in a video posted to social media that the selection is “a shot in the arm for the Canadian energy sector.”

Calgary hosted the World Petroleum Congress in 2000 and brought in extra police officers from British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba in expectation of massive demonstrations which never materialized.

A news release from the World Petroleum Congress Canada calls the event the “Olympics of oil and gas,” noting it will bring in an estimated 5,000 delegates to the city.

“People were excited to learn about Canadian energy. They understand that Calgary remains the epicentre — the global epicentre for the world oil and gas industry, and here’s the chance to showcase our innovation, our environmental stewardship and our sustainability,” Nenshi said in the video from St. Petersburg, standing beside Denis Painchaud, chair of WPC Canada.

“We’ll see the world in 2023,” Nensi added.

Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan Dubai, United Arab Emirates Baku, Azerbaijan and Buenos Aires, Argentina also competed to host the event.

The final round of voting between Calgary and Baku was close — 21 to 20.

“Nothing like a little drama to make the victory all the sweeter,” Nenshi said on Twitter of the final vote.

WPC Canada said the congress is expected to include over 80 national delegations, 700 expert speakers, 500 CEOs, 800 media, and 400 exhibiting companies.

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