At GULFOGEC, We believe that, for a more prosperous tomorrow, businesses need to act in harmony with governments, people and the environment. Throughout our existence, we have leveraged our understanding of the Middle East to promote energy and social sustainability.
In a region that holds over 42 percent of the world's proven gas reserves, we advocated the use of natural gas as a source of fuel. In addition to being a more economical alternative to diesel or gasoline, natural gas is the world’s cleanest fossil fuel, emitting less greenhouse gas and nitrogen oxides than coal, oil or Petroleum.
In our quest to help secure a low carbon energy future for the region, ten years ago, we partnered with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to produce natural gas in support of local electricity generation in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI). Our efforts have enabled a nearly continuous provision of electricity for institutions, businesses and households across the KRI.
In 2017, we extended our partnership with KRG by signing a settlement agreement that encourages us, along with the four other members of the Pearl Petroleum Consortium, to raise our gas production levels in the KRI by 160 per cent over the next two years. To further weave a more prosperous future for the KRI, the government grants us the rights to appraise and develop two additional local blocks.
Complementing our natural gas advocacy efforts, we entered into a year - long partnership with the independent policy institute Chatham House, the Royal Institute for International Affairs, which conducts much needed research and events on the energy challenges and opportunities of the Middle East. Our pioneering spirit is reflected in the achievements of our people, who are our partners in creating a safe, healthy and fulfilling work environment. We are pleased to have reduced our Recordable Injury Frequency rate by over 50 per cent and achieved an LTI-free year in 2017. Moreover, our people devised an Asset Integrity Management programme to prevent safety and environmental hazards. We continuously nurture their innovation by offering them learning and advancement opportunities.
We recognize that investing in the well-being of our communities is key to our longevity. Committed to empowering the more vulnerable segments of society in our areas of operation, we proudly sponsored the first 24 hour cancer fundraiser in the region. We remain committed to creating a shared and lasting prosperity in the region by tackling its most pressing economic, social and environmental concerns. Looking ahead, we seek to intensify our efforts to promote inclusive growth, youth employment and women empowerment through our operations and initiatives. To do so, we aim to further engage in partnerships with governments, industry peers, associations, employees and communities over the years to come.