(EnergyAsia, April 29 2013, Monday) — KPMG held its inaugural Global Energy Conference in Singapore last Friday to coincide with the launch of its Global Energy Institute for the Asia-Pacific region.

The one-day conference brought together some 300 regional business leaders in the energy sector, along with members of government and academia to deliver insights on emerging energy trends, challenges and strategies in the sector.

KPMG said the institute, its first outside the US, serves as a platform to facilitate knowledge sharing for energy executives in Asia and other regions.

S. Iswaran, Singapore’s Minister in Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Home Affairs and Trade & Industry, officiated at the institute’s launch and delivered the keynote address. He was joined by KPMG International’s global chairman, Michael J. Andrew, and KPMG Singapore’s managing partner, Tham Sai Choy.

Pek Hak Bin, head of KPMG’s Energy and Natural Resources practice in

Singapore, said:

“The unprecedented growth in energy demand and the resulting push for alternative energy initiatives in the ASPAC region present unique opportunities. The institute will serve as a knowledge-sharing platform, so that KPMG’s strong pool of energy specialists can reach out to the industry.

Kelvin Wong, an executive director at the Singapore Economic Development Board, described the launch of the institute as “a strong validation of Singapore’s status as the region’s premier energy hub, leveraging our strengths in refining, trading and logistics.”

“Firms like KPMG can centralise their Asia-Pacific knowledge resources in Singapore, and leverage the base of sophisticated lead demand here to develop new knowledge and consulting solutions, and serve their growing base of clients throughout Asia-Pacific,” he said.

Mr Pek also shared that the institute has already started conducting workshops, surveys and interviews with key energy stakeholders from the oil and gas industry in Singapore. The research will be collated into a report summarising opportunities for the ongoing development of Singapore’s oil and gas sector. It will be published later this year.

“Oil and gas demand within the region will continue to rise and Singapore must continue to play a significant role in growing the industry. While Singapore has positioned itself well, there is still room to be even better,” he said.

“Singapore could consider include developing a gas pricing mechanism. Opportunities could also be developed for Singaporean graduates and undergraduates to enroll into petroleum courses which empower them to enter careers in oil and gas.

“We have seen several examples of career and learning opportunities being created in the market to support the oil industry’s growth.”