Southern Company executives are attending this weeks World Energy Congress in Houston, a three-day conference of top government officials and utility executives from around the world. Bill Dahlberg, Southern Company President and CEO; Tom Boren, Southern Energy president; and Raymond Hill, managing director of Consolidated Electric Power Asia are among Southern Companys representatives at the conference, which opened Monday.
Boren is serving as moderator of a panel discussion titled Liberalization, Privatization and Competition in the Energy Industry: What Are the Benefits and Risks?
Panelists include a former energy secretary from the Philippines, the chief minister of Indias Andra Pradesh province and the director of the Swedish Power Association.
The energy industry - given its important role in any countrys economic, political and social development - has traditionally been in the hands of the government, said an introduction of the panel discussion.
The extent of government involvement has varied between countries and energy industries and has been changing remarkably over the last two decades. The trend toward market-based structures and competition has been growing, while governments role is becoming more that of a regulator.
In addition to attending such discussions, participants are expected to discuss prospective business deals. Scheduled speakers include Turkish President Suleyman Demeriel, Deputy South African President Thabo Mbeki and World Bank President James Wolfensohn.