Although Bahrain is now a thriving knowledge economy and has an expanding manufacturing base also, our history shows that our early economy was rooted in the natural wealth of pearls for which Bahrain was famous.
Later, Bahrain was the first Arab country to grasp the importance of the new fossil fuel called petroleum and struck oil.
The transformative power of the fossil fuel industry was discovered much later by other Gulf countries.
Against this backdrop, the Kingdom has taken a vital step forward to energise and modernize the energy sector by re-branding and realigning the national oil and gas sector as Bapco Energies.
Under this move, Bahrain’s resources will be closely monitored and key investment made in new technology and renewables.
The move reflects the for – ward-looking vision of our leadership and the young energy that is shaping the future of our country.
The ninety-plus years of managing the fossil fuel resources and refining services is now giving way to exploring new technologies, understanding marketing strategies in a world criss-crossed by broadband and internet, increasingly managed by AI and a larger picture dominated by the concerns of climate change and net zero evaluations.
The industry also has to re-size itself to accommodate the new aspirations of Young Bahrain.
In the ‘sixties, Bapco fuelled the education of promising future leaders and many of the corporate heads and ministers of the Bahrain of the ‘eighties onward were the result of this sustained education policy.
Today, the Kingdom has a thriving education sector and many Bahraini men and women are returning from higher specialized studies abroad, eager to serve their country.
For these people, the re-organised Bapco Energies will offer opportunities to shine.
Most importantly, the new set-up builds a valuable flexibility into the whole oil, gas and energy sector, giving Bahrain the space to discover new ways to tap alternative energy such as solar and wind power.
It is a race to the next level of energy management and this step takes Bahrain to the gateway of new and greener pastures.
Captain Mahmood Al Mahmood is the Editor-inChief of The Daily Tribune and the President of the Arab-African Unity Organisation for Relief, Human Rights and Counterterrorism