Saudi Arabia is world’s energy ‘shock absorber’, says minister Al-Falih

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih on Monday said that the Kingdom was the world’s energy “shock absorber.” (Reuters)
Updated 16 October 2018
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Saudi Arabia is world’s energy ‘shock absorber’, says minister Al-Falih

  • Al-Falih told an energy event in India that it was time this balancing role was respected and acknowledged by the international community.
  • He added that the Kingdom wanted to continue playing the global balancing role that it currently plays.

RIYADH: Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih on Monday said that the Kingdom was the world’s energy “shock absorber” and pledged to continue to offer a cushion to global supply interruptions.
But he also warned that it was time that this balancing role was respected and acknowledged by the international community.
His remarks come amid concerns among energy-importing nations about the recent rise in the oil price and increased pressure from the US for the Kingdom to boost production.
“We could have another unanticipated, unplanned disruption. We’ve seen Libya, we’ve seen Nigeria, we’ve seen Venezuela and we have sanctions on Iran. These supply disruptions need a shock absorber,” Al-Falih told the CERAWeek event by IHS Markit.
“The shock absorber has been, to a large part, Saudi Arabia. We have invested tens of billions of dollars to build the spare capacity which has been two to three million barrels over the years.
“It has been like a spinning reserve in an electricity system waiting to step in if there is a disruption. We’ve done it out of a sense of responsibility.”
He added that the Kingdom wanted to continue playing that role but also hoped that “the global community of nations will respect and acknowledge what Saudi Arabia has done.
“Once again, we in Saudi Arabia in particular delivered on our role as the world’s cushion against market shocks and today I want to assure our Indian partners and petroleum consumers around the world that we want to continue to support the growth of the global economy,” he said.
In a wide-ranging address, Al-Falih also acknowledged India’s increasingly important status as an energy-consuming nation.With a population that is increasing by some 15 million people per year, India has become a key market for Saudi Arabia and other regional oil exporters.
“India is the world’s fastest- growing energy and oil consuming nation. This trend is playing an important role for driving future demand for oil and gas for decades to come,” he said.
“There can be little doubt that India’s rise as an economic superpower will be accompanied by massive energy demand growth.”
 

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With a population that is increasing by some 15 million people per year, India has become a key market for Saudi Arabia and other regional oil exporters.


Emaar Development remains upbeat in face of profit dip

Updated 4 min 51 sec ago
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Emaar Development remains upbeat in face of profit dip

  • Dubai property market under pressure
  • Union Properties post Q3 loss

DUBAI: Property developer Emaar Development has said investor interest in its pipeline of residential projects remains “strong,” while posting a decline in net profit for the third quarter compared to the same quarter last year.
The company recorded a Q3 net profit of 682 million dirhams ($185.67 million), a 33 percent decline on the 1.02 billion dirhams recorded in the same time period last year, according to a filing on the Dubai stock exchange on Tuesday.
Over a nine-month period, Emaar performed well, with profits rising by 19 percent to reach 2.49 billion dirhams, compared to 2.1 billion dirhams recorded in the same time period last year.
The developer recorded 10 billion dirhams’ worth of residential sales in the first nine months of the year, and has a total sales backlog of 38.5 billion dirhams, which will be recognized as revenue in the next three to four years.
Emaar said it is readying to welcome its first residents next year to its Dubai Creek Harbour development.
This year it launched The Grand, a collection of luxury apartments and penthouses in Dubai Creek Harbour, as well as Socio and Collective, co-living spaces in Dubai Hills Estate, among other projects.
“The strong performance of Emaar Development underlines the strength of Dubai’s property sector, driven by the robust economic fundamentals of the nation,” said Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Development and Emaar Properties, in a statement.
Alabbar’s comments come as other market commentators raise concerns about the future of the emirate’s real estate market.
While many hope the rebound in oil prices and the World Expo being held in Dubai in 2020 will reignite the property market, there are signs that property prices will remain flat for some time.
Damac Properties Chairman Hussain Sajwani said at the World Economic Forum event on Monday that 2019 will be “another difficult year,” Bloomberg reported.
According to real estate consultancy JLL’s Q3 Dubai report: “The residential market has continued to soften with single digit declines in both sale prices and rents during Q3 2018 despite recent government measures to inject confidence in the market by introducing 10-year residency visas for certain categories of retiree.”
It added: “The lack of new project launches at (the annual property event) Cityscape reflects the subdued investor sentiment and prices are likely to decline further over the next 12 months.”
Union Properties, the developer behind Dubai’s Motor City, also posted its third-quarter results on Tuesday, reporting net profit of 145.6 million dirhams for the first nine months, compared to a net loss of 2.3 billion dirhams in the same period last year.
The results mark a turnaround for the company, which saw its profits hit last year after management had to make provisions to cover previous accounting errors.
The company did, however, post a loss attributable to the shareholders of the company in Q3 of 61.8 million dirhams.