Under the patronage of His Excellency Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa al Khalifa, Minister of Oil, Kingdom of Bahrain


Wednesday, March 23

08:00 - 08:45
08:45 - 09:00
Opening Ceremony
09:00 - 11:00
Executive Plenary Session 1: The Strategy to Deliver Unconventional Resources-Identifying the Weakest Link
Moderator(s) Mohamed Al Zaabi, ADNOC; Reinaldo Angulo Yznaga, Halliburton
Speaker(s) Ibrahim Al Arnaout, Saudi Aramco; Rodolphe Lugol, Total; Robert H (Bob) Gales, Halliburton

The oil and gas industry has quantified a vast amount of unconventional resources, but still needs to develop available petroleum volumes. In the current and future state of the world economical drivers and taking into account the high-level variables, i.e. technical versus economical, and at one-floor below, e.g. CAPEX, knowledge, technology, HSE, and objectives grouped in strategies, the panel will elaborate on the different points of view to define how to make a commercial delivery of unconventionals, and what should be considered the main area of focus for sustainable production of this resource.

11:00 - 11:30
11:30 - 12:45
Session 1: Resource Evaluation and Reservoir Characterisation
Session Chairpersons Tristan Euzen, IFP; Ali Shehab, Tatweer Petroleum

Unconventional plays are highly heterogeneous systems with complex distributions of rock and fluid properties at multiple scales. Capturing this variability as early as possible in the life of a play is paramount to properly evaluating recoverable resources and optimise their development. Integrating geoscience with engineering is also key to understanding the main controls among the myriads of parameters that influence well productivity. This session explores recent advances and promotes knowledge sharing on multidisciplinary workflows and technologies in the field of resource evaluation and reservoir characterisation and their application to the Middle East unconventional plays.


  • Probabilistic Physics-Informed Machine-Learning. Practical Application to the Formation Evaluation of The Unconventional Resource Potential of Diyab Source Rock, UAE
    Nicolas Leseur, Sr. Reservoir Geosciences Advisor, Baker Hughes
12:45 - 13:45
13:45 - 15:00
Session 2: Modelling and Simulation
Session Chairpersons Murtada Aljawad, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals

This session discusses the recent modeling approaches to understand hydraulic fracturing. This includes understanding the mechanism of hydraulic fracture propagation in naturally fractured and weakly bedded formations. Knowledge of proppant transport mechanism will also provide insight for better design and productivity estimations. Discussion of proppant distribution in slickwater stimulated fractures will be be carried out in this session. Presenters will shed light on the impact proppant placement in secondary created fractures and conductivity on productivity prediction. Reservoir modeling to understand transport phenomena in unconventional plays will be discussed. Building reliable geo-mechanical models from logs are also out to be presented.

Keynote Speaker:

  • Saad Al-Afnan, Assistant professor, Petroleum Engineering Department, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals


  • Geomechanics Study: Key to Successful Development of Unconventional Resources
    Mohammed Omer, Weatherford
  • Influence of Natural Fractures on Multi-Stage Hydraulic Fracture Propagation in Tight Middle Eastern Reservoir
    Shaikhah Al Mteiri, Khalifa University of Science and Technology
  • A New Era in Fracture and Fault Analyses and Modelling: Multiscale Surface Mapping, 3D Data Driven Networks and the new DXM Protocol for Geology Driven 3d DFFN Modelling
    J.P. van Dijk, Dragon Oil

ePoster Presentations:

  • Chemically-Induced Pressure Pulse for Unconventional Gas Fracturing: Modelling and Experimental Investigation
    Ayman Nakhli, Saudi Aramco
  • Micro-CT Study of Brittleness Models for Shale Reservoirs
    Lateef Owolabi Lawa, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals


15:00 - 15:30
15:30 - 16:45
Session 3: Drilling Practices and Optimisation
Session Chairpersons Mohammad Al-Zaki, Saudi Aramco; Zied Ouled Ameur, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

Unconventional Drilling in Saudi Arabia is dedicated to delivering wells safely and efficiently to meet Kingdom’s growing demands for gas. Drilling and Optimization team implemented fit-for-purpose technologies and conducted detailed optimization workshops to improve flat time, rig move time, as well as drilling and completion practices. Average time and cost has reduced by 70% over the past five years by implementing the following major initiatives:

  1. Managed Pressure Drilling for narrow mud weight window, extended bit life and improved ROP, allowed access to reserves that could not be drilled conventionally
  2. 4-1/2” longstring cemented completion eliminated clean out and upper completion runs
  3. 5-1/2” longstring cemented monobore completions with 8-3/8” horizontal
  4. Slim design combination of curve and lateral avoided running 7” liner
  5. High dogleg severity in curve section minimized footage
  6. Vibration mitigation tools protected BHA components and improved ROP
  7. Optimized BHA design to achieve highest ROP and lowest CPF

Keynote Speaker:

  • Abdulaziz M Batyour, Superintendent URDD, Saudi Aramco 


  • Reducing Rig Days and Optimising Overall Drilling Process by Implementing Managed Pressure Drilling Technique in Unconventional Reservoir Field 
    M.Jamal, Weatherford
  • A New Rate of Penetration Model Improves Well Drilling Performance
    Mohammed Murif Al-Rubaii, Saudi Aramco
  • Defining Maximum Allowable ROP in Realtime Enhancing Drilling Performance Based on Cutting Recovery Technology in Highly Deviated Wells
    Abdullah M. Alshammari, Kuwait Oil Company 

ePoster Presentations:

  • A New Real Time Prediction of Equivalent Circulation Density from Drilling Surface Parameters Without using PWD Tool 
    Mohammed Murif Al-Rubaii, Saudi Aramco


Thursday, March 24

08:00 - 08:45
08:45 - 09:00
09:00 - 11:00
Executive Plenary Session 2: Cooperation Synergies between Service Companies, NOCs and IOCs Across the Region
Moderator(s) Ziad Al Jalal, Schlumberger; Ali Shehab, Tatweer Petroleum
Speaker(s) Bjorn Viguerie,Total; Chokri Ben Amor, NESR; Khalifah M. Al-Amri, Saudi Aramco; Frederik Majkut, Schlumberger

In the last few years, unconventional plays in the Middle East have evolved significantly. Many companies in the region already embarked on their own exploration and appraisal programs to unlock the significant volumes of unconventional resources. Few others have initiated their development plans and as these plays evolve, several geological, technical as well as operational and logistical challenges arise. The success of these unconventional plays is highly dependent on overcoming these challenges; cooperation synergies between service companies, NOCs and IOCs play a crucial role in shortening the learning curve and help developing solutions to such challenges.

This panel session aims at generating a constructive discussion about how to build long-term cooperation between services companies, IOCs, and NOCs, how to build cooperation programs including joint R&D, training, technology development, HSE, and operational efficiency. Ensuring alignment in the objectives and goals will eventually lead to successful development of unconventional resources in the Middle East.

11:00 - 11:30
11:30 - 12:45
Session 4: Well Completions and Production Enhancement
Session Chairpersons Amit D. Nakhwa, NCS Multistage; Ziad Al Jalal, Schlumberger

Over the past decade, Operators and Service Companies have put significant efforts towards engineering and developing well completion, production enhancement and stimulation techniques for unconventional fields.

The Middle East Region has its own challenges, from high bottom-hole temperatures and pressures, tectonic activities to diverse reservoirs heterogeneity, all of which are considered when modelling and proposing treatments and solutions.

This session aims to bring together subject matter experts to discuss the current state, best practices, and emerging technologies for consideration in the Middle East and around the world focusing on completion and production solutions including hardware, well/stage spacing, cluster density, hydraulic fracturing materials, methods, techniques and modelling, as well as artificial lift equipment and production optimization operations.


  • Diversion Techniques Applications in UR Fields
     Almaz Sadykov, Saudi Aramco
  • Changing The Rules of The Game in Hydraulic Fracturing Fluids
    Mohammed Omer, Weatherford
  • Optimising Effective Fracture Spacing and Completions Design in an Unconventional Reservoir: An Integrated Woodford Formation (Anadarko Basin, Oklahoma) Case Study
    Adam Staruiala, NCS Multistage


ePoster Presentation:

  • Screening Artificial Lift and Other Techniques for Liquid Unloading in Unconventional Gas Wells
    Chidirim E. Ejim, Saudi Aramco
  • A Novel Thermochemical Fracturing Approach to Reduce Fracturing Pressure of Tight-Gas Reservoirs
    Ayman Nakhli, Saudi Aramco
  • Improving Fracture Treatment Distribution with Insights From a Large Scale Study of Eroded Perforations
    Glyn Roberts, EV Offshore Ltd
  • Bluepoint Electronic Technology: Optimising Frac Completion with Infinite Stages
    Mostafa Shahin, MAP OIL TOOLs Inc.
12:45 - 13:45
13:45 - 15:00
Session 5: Overcoming Logistic and Environmental Challenges Efficiently
Session Chairpersons Stephen Drylie, Core Laboratories; Moin Muhammad, NESR

The development of unconventional resources requires extensive operations on a large number of wells drilled and completed in often remote and challenging environments. Performing these operations efficiently ensures that environmental impact and development costs are minimized while the abundant resources are made available for use as quickly as possible. In the extreme surface environment coupled with limited unconventional oilfield infrastructure of the Middle East, the efficiency gains can be more difficult but are all the more critical. This session will explore practical efforts that have been made to:

  • Move drilling time from months to weeks
  • Accelerate fracturing rates from one stage every few days to 5 to 7 stages every day
  • Reduce the overall carbon footprint and water use

Keynote Presentation:

  • Nader Galal, Supply Chain Director, NESR 


  • Setting up Efficiency Driven Frac Operation for Middle East Unconventional Resources by Bringing Fit for Purpose Technologies from North America Shale Experience
    Ignatius Emmanuel, NESR; Mohammed Houchaimi, NESR
  • Application of Saudi Local Sands as A Reliable Source of Proppant for Shale Fracturing Treatments
    Ahmed Binghanim, Halliburton

ePoster Presentations:

  • Flowback and Hydrocarbon Production Enhancement in High Temperature and TDS Environments in Hydraulic Fracturing
    Jesse Lee, Nalco Champion, an Ecolab Company



15:00 - 15:15
15:15 - 16:30
Session 6: Economic Drivers—Maximising Resource Value
Session Chairpersons Mohamed Al Zaabi, ADNOC; Reinaldo Angulo Yznaga, Halliburton

The remarkable increase of production from the more mature unconventional plays has brought deeper insights and challenges about the economics of this type of resource. The operators and technology providers are working play by play and well by well to improve development and lifting costs. The fund lenders are struggling to support the required long-term investments based in the current economic environment.

The oil and gas industry has always considered commercial competition paramount when dealing with investment in different exploration and development opportunities, e.g. onshore versus offshore, primary/secondary versus EOR, light/medium versus heavy oil, according to the limited availability of capital. Unconventional resources are also competing fot these limited resources in the complex economic environment that the oil and gas industry is facing.

This section is aimed to provide an open discussion about the current and future primers and drivers for the cost-effective development and production of the unconventional plays in other petroleum basins in the world, and especially in the Middle East. The topic includes what the main areas of attention need to be, the main risks that the industry is facing to produce this resource, and the most critical areas to trigger a sustainable unconventional petroleum based production.

Keynote Speaker:

  • Nihat Gurmen, Marketing and Technology Integration Manager, Schlumberger 


  • The Challenges of Exploiting Shale Gas in Egypt 
    Hassan Salem | Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) 
  • High intensity Completion, Lesson Learned and Application in Middle East 
    Nabila Lazreg, ADNOC
  • NPV Optimisation Methodology for Unconventional Greenfields follows by an Uncertainty Quantification Analysis
    Byungin Ian Choi, Computer Modelling Group Ltd.

ePoster Presenation:

  • A New Robust Methodology Improves Rig Performance
    Mohammed Murif Al-Rubaii, Saudi Aramco
16:30 - 16:45