Bernard Looney, BP chief executive, upstream, posed these questions to his audience: “Is this [oil] price shock different than the others? Is it lower for longer, or is it lower forever?” He answered, “Let me be clear. At BP, we don’t think that it is lower forever.” Especially with the long-term global energy demand picture looking so strong, he said. And even after the usual cuts that companies make during such tough economic times, they will have to continue to improve productivity to meet this growing energy demand. “Improving productivity is the best insurance we can have for whatever future you chose to believe in,” Looney said.