WORLD EXCLUSIVE: Brit-Govt Energy Minister meets with China National Petroleum Corporation ‘to discuss Grangemouth refinery’

The PetroChina head office in Peking.
The PetroChina head office in Peking.

WORLD EXCLUSIVE by Scottish Energy News

QUESTION: Knock, knock. Who’s there?

ANSWER: Everyone … on the following list of energy companies and foreign state-owned energy providers who knocked on door to see Brit-Govt Energy ministers in 2017.

The list clearly shows that nuclear energy took up a lot of time of the BEIS Ministers, and also illustrates the ease with which the nuclear industry is able to access government Ministers.

The reasons for such meetings – where not officially (albeit) briefly provided – can be seen the in light of subsequent major corporate and/or industry developments; such as the meeting with tidal power developer Atlantis Resources, which is building a 398-MW sea-bed electricity generating turbine array off Caithness.

But one salient issue – which is not wholly explained by BEIS – is the full reason why PetroChina met with two separate Energy ministers on two occasions, one of which was to ‘discuss UK operations’.

PetroChina is the listed arm of state-owned China National Petroleum Corporation.

The Peking-based China National Petroleum Corporation is one of the largest integrated energy groups in the world and was ranked the third in 2016 Fortune Global 500.

Equally intriguing, is the meeting which junior Energy Minister Jesse Norman, MP, had with the China National Petroleum Corporation ‘to discuss Grangemouth refinery’ on 17 May 2017.

The ‘Grangemouth refinery’ is frequently used as standard industry shorthand to refer to the Grangemouth petro-chemicals refinery at Grangemouth, which is owned and operated by INEOS.

BEIS declined to provide any further information on these meetings. INEOS  did not responded to inquiries from Scottish Energy News.

Meanwhile, David Mundell, the British Government Minister for Scotland, has had not meetings with the Scottish energy sector in the past six months.

But he did find the time to meet the editors of Unionist newspapers (Daily Record and The Glasgow Herald) on two occasions with his special advisor Magnus Gardham (a former journalist).

In addition, Gardham also met with the Scottish Daily Mail and the BBC.

In contrast, the politically-appointed special advisers at the BEIS (Jacob Wilmer and Glen Hall) – which is a much larger department – did not hold any official meetings with media.

BEIS Minister Visitor/ lobbyist             Date Agenda / reason for meeting
Richard Harrington


Smart Energy GB 7 Sept to discuss 2018 targets
PetroChina 26 Sept Not known
Greg Clark NuGeneration Toshiba


10 July Nuclear issues
Horizon Nuclear Power Ltd 10 July Nuclear issues
Hitachi 25 July Nuclear issues
Toshiba NuGeneration


17 April


Nuclear issues
EDF 17 May


Hinkley nuclear power station
Jesse Norman


Dong Energy 17 April To discuss offshore wind
Atlantis Resources 17 April To discuss tidal stream energy
Parsons Brinckerhoff: Institute of Acoustics 17 April To discuss noise from wind turbines
Hitachi 17 April To discuss nuclear issues
China National Petroleum Corporation 17 May To discuss Grangemouth Refinery
Margot James Energy UK 17 Feb To discuss the work of Energy UK
Jesse Norman Chevron Upstream 17 Jan To discuss oil and gas
NuGen 17 Jan To discuss nuclear energy
Statoil 17 Jan To discuss energy
Tidal Lagoon Power 17 Jan To discuss tidal energy
Vattenfall 17 Jan To discuss offshore wind
Toshiba 17 Feb To discuss new nuclear generation
Maersk Oil 17 Feb To discuss oil and gas
Scottish & Southern Energy 17 Feb To discuss smart meters, offshore wind, retail prices and security of supply
  Swedish Energy Ambassador, EDF Energy, E.ON 17 Mar To discuss district heating
PetroChina International 17 Mar To discuss UK operations


18 Dec 2017

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