Kingdom aims to quadruple mining, renewables and logistics says Al-Falih

Saudi Arabia' oil minister Khalid Al-Falih and foreign minister Adel Al-Jubeir on their way to meet Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May in Downing Street. (Reuters)
Updated 08 March 2018
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Kingdom aims to quadruple mining, renewables and logistics says Al-Falih

LONDON: Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih has revealed the Kingdom aims to quadruple the size of its mining, renewables and logistics sectors.
He was speaking at the Saudi-UK CEO Forum in London to mark the state visit of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to London.
“One of our programs is the development of the Kingdom’s industrial energy and logistics. These are right at the heart of creating investment opportunities. We have $1.3 trillion of mining endowment. We want to quadruple our mining statistics and supply chains. As we quadruple some of these sectors, the focus is on quality not quantity. This will require the best collaboration between us,” Al-Falih said.
“The chemicals sector, which has grown fantastically in the last few decades, now needs to grow in terms of technology content and value added projects.”
Earlier, Liam Fox, the UK trade secretary said Britain was committed to helping Saudi Arabia become a “global investment powerhouse.”
Fox said he hoped Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) would find Britain a key investment opportunity that could work for both countries, and that would boost London’s status as a world financial center.
Fox also said the first Saudi/UK education dialogue will take place, to “establish a government to government policy exchange.”
Peter Mandelson, former EU trade minister, said the key to understanding KSA investment opportunities for Britain was the realization that Saudi Arabia was a staging post between and East and West, and “a jumping off point to Africa,” said Mandelson, former minister in Tony Blair’s Labour government.


China says hard to proceed on trade with US putting ‘knife to its neck’

Updated 25 September 2018
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China says hard to proceed on trade with US putting ‘knife to its neck’

  • When the talks can restart would depend on the ‘will’ of the US, senior Chinese commerce official says
  • Several rounds of Sino-US talks in recent months have appeared to produce no breakthroughs

BEIJING: A senior Chinese official said on Tuesday that it is difficult to proceed with trade talks with the US while Washington is putting “a knife to China’s neck,” a day after both sides heaped fresh tariffs on each other’s goods.
When the talks can restart would depend on the “will” of the US, Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen said at a news conference.
US tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods and retaliatory taxes by Beijing on $60 billion worth of US products including liquefied natural gas (LNG) kicked in on Monday as the trade dispute between the world’s two biggest economies escalated, unnerving global financial markets.
China also accused the US of engaging in “trade bullyism,” and said Washington was intimidating other countries to submit to its will, according to a white paper on the dispute published by China’s State Council, or cabinet, on Monday.
“The sharp criticism (from Beijing on Monday) suggests that China might prefer to wait out the current US administration, rather than embarking on potentially futile negotiations,” Mizuho Bank said in a note to clients.
“Given these developments, it is increasingly likely that both sides will not resume negotiations for some time, at least until there is a noticeable shift in the political mood on either side.”
Several rounds of Sino-US talks in recent months have appeared to produce no breakthroughs and fresh negotiations which had been expected in coming weeks have been canceled after Beijing reportedly decided late last week not to send a delegation to Washington.
One cannot say that all previous trade discussions have been useless, but the US has abandoned its mutual understanding with China, Wang said.
China does not know why the US has changed its mind after reaching an agreement with China on trade earlier, Wang said, apparently referring to talks in May when it appeared briefly that a framework was being sorted out.
US exporters including LNG suppliers would “certainly” be hurt, but Beijing’s retaliation would provide opportunities to other LNG-exporting countries, Wang said, adding that Australia is an important source of the fuel for China.
“China is a big and powerful nation, so whether it is a confrontation with China economically or militarily, it would come at a huge price,” the state-backed Global Times wrote in an editorial on Tuesday.
“As such, it is an attractive prospect for other countries including the US to coexist with China peacefully,” said the newspaper, which is published by the ruling Communist Party’s People’s Daily.