Clearview Strategy Group is an international energy consultancy that advises companies operating, serving or investing in the energy, extractive and related industries. We work directly with clients to identify opportunities, develop market entry strategi
Kirk SherrKirk Sherr is President of Clearview Strategy Group, LLC, an international energy strategy, policy and project development consultancy.Mr. Sherr has deep experience in energy project development throughout Mexico and South America, having lived 16 years in the region.He has also worked extensively in the Middle East where he founded international upstream energy services businesses.
He has successfully developed natural gas pipelines, power plants and other energy business in numerous countries.
In addition, he was a founding member of the Brazilian Independent Power Association and developed one of the first successful natural gas power plants in Brazil as well as a private natural gas pipeline in Mexico.Most recently, he was President of Regester Larkin Energy and prior to that he was Latin American practice leader at the Scowcroft Group where he helped diverse energy sector and manufacturing clients grow their businesses throughout Latin America.Kirk led Texas Utilities natural gas distribution and pipeline development operations in Mexico and worked for many years in Brazil developing power plants and pipelines.Early in his career, he worked as a diplomat, serving in Asia, El Salvador, Colombia and Washington, D.C.Kirk received his AB in economics, government and Spanish from Franklin and Marshall College; he obtained his JD from the Univ. of Denver (Colorado Bar Association member).He also studied at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the Univ. of Denver and at the University of Chile.
He is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.
R. Kirk Sherr - Kirk Sherr is a Managing Director at OFS Capital LLC.He is also the President of Clearview Strategy Group.As a senior international energy executive, Mr. Sherr has deep experience in energy project development and implementation and energy infrastructure operations including pipelines, power plants and gas distribution companies. ...
"Argentina is the first out of the gate for the new reality in Latin America Twitter," says Kirk Sherr, president of Clearview Strategy Group, a Washington-based advisory firm for the Latin American energy sector.
The good news, says Sherr, is that even in the darkest times in the last few years of Kirchner's political policies, foreign oil and gas companies have been keen to get into the Vaca Muerta geological formation, containing major deposits of shale oil and shale gas, in the Neuquén Basin in Argentina.
Total, Exxon, and Chevron have all gone into the region.
"If they've been keen on the geological and developmental capacities of those shale deposits, they should be really keen to go in [now] under a better government," he said.
Kirk Sherr is President of Clearview Strategy Group, LLC, a Washington-based energy strategy and policy consultancy.He is also Executive Director of the American Committees on Foreign Relations and an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service focusing on energy and security.Mr. Sherr has deep experience in energy project development and infrastructure operations including upstream, pipelines, power plants and gas distribution companies.He worked extensively on upstream projects and seismic operations in the Kurdistan area of Iraq from 2004 to 2014, and has also developed energy projects in Latin America and Africa.
Previously, he was Latin American practice leader at the Scowcroft Group where he helped diverse energy sector and manufacturing clients throughout Latin America.
Mr. Sherr also led Texas Utilities natural gas distribution and pipeline development operations in Mexico and worked for many years in Brazil developing thermal power plants and natural gas pipelines.He began his career as a diplomat, working in the Philippines, El Salvador, Colombia and Washington, D.C.Mr. Sherr received his AB in economics, government and Spanish from Franklin and Marshall College, and received his JD from the University of Denver and is a member of the Colorado Bar Association.Mr. Sherr is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.
Information from Mr Sherr's Topic
Kirk Sherr, president of Clearview Strategy Group, LLC, an energy sector consultancy, notes that although Brazil is the largest economy in Latin America, and Braskem is "extremely competitive within the Mercosur [trade] bloc," Braskem's prospects for further growth in South America are limited.
"There is not much more market share that Braskem can acquire inside Brazil," says Sherr, given that they already have a dominant (70%) share within Mercosur.
Outside Mercosur, other Latin American countries that are relatively open to investment and trade - such as Chile, Colombia and Mexico - are growing more rapidly than Brazil's Mercosur partners - Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela.
Those other non-Mercosur countries, including NAFTA member Mexico, can offer Braskem a lot more room for market expansion, Sherr says.
Unlike Mexico, the governments of Argentina and Venezuela, which joined Mercosur in 2012, have pursued protectionist policies that have opened very few opportunities for foreign investors.
"Instead of buying the polypropylene from Braskem in [Veracruz] Mexico, plastic manufacturers [in Mexico] could buy it from Houston….
This must a scary thought for Braskem, which has committed $3 billion to a petrochemical plant."
On the other hand, when Braskem executives looked at Mexico, adds Sherr, they saw a country where they could take further advantage of NAFTA to increase Braskem's penetration of growing markets in both the United States and Canada. Mexico has enacted a wide range of free-trade agreements, not just with the U.S. and Canada, but with free-market economies worldwide - including the European Union, Japan, Chile, Colombia, Israel and Peru.
Gaining access to the payoff from the Canal's expansion "is not feasible if you are based only in Brazil," says Sherr.
Nevertheless, Sherr warns that if he were on the board of Braskem, he might be "on edge about what might happen if prices for ethane stay low" in the U.S. "It could be a potential threat for their Mexico plant" if some buyers in Mexico decide to take advantage of cheap feedstock prices and buy their petrochemicals from nearby plants in the U.S. - such as Texas and Louisiana - instead of from Mexico.
It's hardly accidental that a Brazilian company has become the leader in bioplastics, according to Sherr.
The challenge for Braskem in the U.S. is that it will have to compete for market share in a country where "price is as strong, or stronger, a consideration for most people who are buying plastics products," adds Sherr.
A Shortage of Talent
For all its promise, the U.S. petrochemical sector's recovery is being threatened by a shortage of experienced engineers.
"There is a big hole in the U.S. in terms of the ages of petroleum and petrochemical engineers," says Sherr.
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