GCC Petroleum Media Forum
By Roudha Ali
DUBAI — The GCC Petroleum Media Forum is a forum that gathers regional petroleum companies to enhance their relationship with the media, finds solution to the barriers that face their relationship and discusses strategies to develop energy knowledge and partnership.
The 3rd GCC Petroleum Media Forum is a two-day forum that started on April 19, 2017 at Rosewood hotel in Abu Dhabi. This Forum was almost similar to the 2ed GCC Petroleum Media Forum in its goals and strategies, which made me wonder is the Forum really given the proper attention that it needs and are the petroleum and media institutions taking the recommendations discussed in the Forum into consideration? Obviously, if the goals and the strategies are still the same and have not been improved or changed that means there is no progress between the petroleum and media sectors relationship.
Most of the Forum attendees contributed in taking the surveys during the sessions. The first session created an argument; it discussed the reasons for the poor media coverage of the regional oil sector. The survey resulted in blaming the journalist for not being adequately trained for technical complexity of the petroleum industry. The journalists were upset and discouraged. Many of them expressed their opinions through the twitter hashtag #GCCPMF arguing that the limited access to information is the main reason for the poor media coverage. Journalists are ready to provide good coverage about the petroleum sector to the public if they could only have access to information. Moreover, journalists and media experts expressed how it is unfair that most of the attendees that took the surveys are people from the petroleum sector and non- specialists.
However, even if the recommendations of the Petroleum Media Forum will take time to be implemented, they can alert people about the importance of the subject instantly. Students, for example, who participated and attended the Forum will learn more about the topic and can become more interested in petroleum communication.