Saudis push for oil market recovery with lowest output in 8 years

In January, cutbacks by the 11 OPEC members amounted to 93 percent compliance, according to a Reuters calculation based on OPEC’s figures. (Reuters)
Updated 14 February 2017
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Saudis push for oil market recovery with lowest output in 8 years

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest crude exporter, told the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) that it cut oil production to its lowest level in more than eight years, signaling its seriousness in supporting market recovery.
The level of Saudi cuts in January shows that the Kingdom went beyond its obligations under a deal to balance world markets that it made last year with other producers.
The Kingdom reported that it reduced output by 717,600 barrels per day (bpd) last month to 9.748 million bpd, according to a monthly report from OPEC released on Monday. Under the agreement, Saudi Arabia pledged to cut output to 10.058 million bpd.
OPEC and 11 non-OPEC producers agreed in December to cut output by nearly 1.8 million bpd to support market recovery and clear excess crude that left oil prices below $50 per barrel.
OPEC is 92 percent compliant with its pledge to reduce output by 1.2 million bpd, Kuwaiti Oil Minister Essam Al-Marzooq said Monday, adding that non-OPEC producers are 50 percent compliant with their pledge of 558,000 bpd.
Abdulsamad Al-Awadhi, a former representative for Kuwait in OPEC, told Arab News: “The same old scenario still exists: OPEC is still cutting more than non-OPEC.”
OPEC is still urging oil suppliers outside the group to fulfil their commitments to cut output, and crude prices will rise once producers demonstrate better compliance with the agreement to clear a global glut, said Al-Marzooq.
“At the time when producers signed the deal, the initial commitments were to gradually increase cuts until April and May, so we were expecting to see some producers not fulfilling the cuts 100 percent,” he added.
“We understand the circumstances, and in February we are talking to non-OPEC producers to raise their cuts according to their commitments.”
Other OPEC members, including Kuwait, are taking advantage of the deal to perform maintenance work on their fields.
Saudi Arabia has been performing planned work on its fields since December, but a source told Bloomberg in January that its cut is unrelated to the maintenance.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE), also an OPEC member, will meet its pledged level of cuts as an average over six months, said the country’s Energy Minister Suhail Al-Mazrouei.
The UAE expects to make deeper reductions when oilfield maintenance work starts in Abu Dhabi in late March or April, he added, without quantifying the nation’s current compliance with its pledged cuts.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) reported on Feb. 10 that OPEC achieved the best compliance rate in its history at the outset of the accord.


UAE to loosen visa rules for investors and innovators

Updated 21 May 2018
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UAE to loosen visa rules for investors and innovators

  • UAE cabinet announces the launch of an integrated visa system to attract talent and talent in all vital sectors of the national economy
  • The Council also announced changes in the system of foreign ownership of companies in the country, which allows the acquisition of 100% of the global investors by the end of the year

DUBAI: The United Arab Emirates, home to financial hubs Abu Dhabi and Dubai, is loosening its residency laws and will grant long-term visas for up to 10 years to investors and highly-skilled professionals.
The 10-year residency visas will be granted to specialists in science, medicine and research, and to “exceptional students.” The state-run WAM news agency says the plan aims to attract global investment and innovators.
The UAE Cabinet approved the new rules on Sunday, saying plans are also on track to allow foreign investors 100 percent ownership of their UAE-based companies this year.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum affirmed that the UAE will remain a global incubator for exceptional talents and a permanent destination for international investors. “The UAE has been open, governed by tolerance and contributed to by all who live on its land.
“Our open environment, tolerant values, infrastructure and flexible legislation offer the best opportunities to attract international investment and exceptional talent in the UAE,” he said. “Our country is the land of opportunity, the best environment for realizing human dreams and unleashing their extraordinary potentials.”
The new regulations include raising the percentage of global investors’ ownership in companies to 100% by the end of the current year. He directed the Ministry of Economy in coordination with the concerned parties to implement the decision and follow up on its developments and submit a detailed study in the third quarter of this year.
The new regulations approved by the Council of Ministers and the authorities concerned have also set the procedures for implementing them to grant investors residence visas of up to ten years for them and all members of their families, as well as granting residency visas of up to ten years for specialized competencies in the medical, scientific, research and technical fields.
The new regulations also include visas for students studying in the country for five years and a 10-year residency for exceptional students.
Under current laws, foreign companies must have an Emirati owning 51 percent of the shares, unless the company operates in a free zone. Major brands Apple and Tesla are believed to be exceptions to the rule.