Al-Naimi: Kingdom will not limit oil output, can meet customer demand

Updated 30 December 2015
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Al-Naimi: Kingdom will not limit oil output, can meet customer demand

ALKHOBAR: Petroleum and Mineral Resources Minister Ali Al-Naimi said the Kingdomdoes not limit its output and has the capacity to meet additional demand, state television Al Ekhbariya reported.
“The increase in production depends on ... the demand of the customers. We meet our customers’ demand, there is no longer a limit to production, as long as there is demand, we have the ability to meet demand,” Al-Naimi said.
The Wall Street Journal, which reported the same comments as Al Ekhbariya, also quoted Al-Naimi as saying Saudi Arabia’s oil policy was “reliable” and would not change.
He has made similar comments in the past when asked about plans to boost production.
“We expect — from now on — efficiency of energy consumption to increase, which means the energy consumed will be reduced,” Al-Naimi said, in reference to the recent subsidy reforms.
On Monday, Saudi Aramco Chairman Khalid Al-Falih said his country was better equipped to wait out low oil prices than other producers. The comment was in line with Saudi Arabia’s no-cut oil policy on output despite a sharp fall in global oil prices since mid-2014.


Gulf defense spending ‘to top $110bn by 2023’

Updated 15 February 2019
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Gulf defense spending ‘to top $110bn by 2023’

  • Saudi Arabia and UAE initiatives ‘driving forward industrial defense capabilities’
  • Budgets are increasing as countries pursue modernization of equipment and expansion of their current capabilities

LONDON: Defense spending by Gulf Arab states is expected to rise to more than $110 billion by 2023, driven partly by localized military initiatives by Saudi Arabia and the UAE, a report has found.

Budgets are increasing as countries pursue the modernization of equipment and expansion of their current capabilities, according to a report by analytics firm Jane’s by IHS Markit.

Military expenditure in the Gulf will increase from $82.33 billion in 2013 to an estimated $103.01 billion in 2019, and is forecast to continue trending upward to $110.86 billion in 2023.

“Falling energy revenues between 2014 and 2016 led to some major procurement projects being delayed as governments reigned in budget deficits,” said Charles Forrester, senior defense industry analyst at Jane’s.

“However, defense was generally protected from the worst of the spending cuts due to regional security concerns and budgets are now growing again.”

Major deals in the region have included Eurofighter Typhoon purchases by countries including Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

Saudi Arabia is also looking to “localize” 50 percent of total government military spending in the Kingdom by 2030, and in 2017 announced the launch of the state-owned military industrial company Saudi Arabia Military Industries.

Forrester said such moves will boost the ability for Gulf countries to start exporting, rather than purely importing defense equipment.

“Within the defense sector, the establishment of Saudi Arabia Military Industries (SAMI) in 2017 and consolidation of the UAE’s defense industrial base through the creation of Emirates Defense Industries Company (EDIC) in 2014 have helped consolidate and drive forward industrial defense capabilities,” he said.

“This has happened as the countries focus on improving the quality of the defense technological work packages they undertake through offset, as well as increasing their ability to begin exporting defense equipment.”

Regional countries are also considering the use of “disruptive technologies” such as artificial intelligence in defense, Forrester said.

Meanwhile, it emerged on Friday that worldwide outlays on weapons and defense rose 1.8 percent to more than $1.67 trillion in 2018.

The US was responsible for almost half that increase, according to “The Military Balance” report released at the Munich Security Conference and quoted by Reuters.

Western powers were concerned about Russia’s upgrades of air bases and air defense systems in Crimea, the report said, but added that “China perhaps represents even more of a challenge, as it introduces yet more advanced military systems and is engaged in a strategy to improve its forces’ ability to operate at distance from the homeland.”