Kuwait is aiming to produce an extra 1 million barrels a day of oil by 2020 in order to meet growing demand for energy.

Improved technology will enable the Gulf state to reach the ambitious target, said Farouk al-Zanki, chief executive officer of Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC), at MEED’s Kuwait Energy and Infrastructure Projects 2012 on 5 November.

“Over the next five years, there will be an average expenditure of $1bn to improve technology and expand oil production,” he said. “About 60 per cent of this will be for upstream expansions.”

Kuwait has a current oil production rate of about 3.1 million barrels per day (bpd).

The KPC chief said that the company was already taking steps to achieve technological improvements, which includes investing more than $1.5bn to build a research and development centre.

Al-Zanki also appealed to the private sector to assist Kuwait in its energy plans.

“By establishing partnerships with oil companies, we can improve oil extraction and production,” said Al-Zanki. “Kuwait provides a great opportunity for the private sector.”

During his address, Al-Zanki also spoke of KPC’s aim to utilise solar energy in future energy production. Al-Zanki said that KPC has taken strategic decisions to develop solar energy and plans two pilot studies on developing solar power within the oil sector.