$658m deal signed to supply power to 210,000 homes in South Africa

The Kingdom is the biggest supplier of crude to South Africa, accounting for about 47 percent of its requirement. (Photo: twitter)
Updated 27 October 2018
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$658m deal signed to supply power to 210,000 homes in South Africa

  • The agreement provides a framework for investment cooperation and will promote investment relations

RIYADH: Saudi company ACWA Power, which operates in the fields of power generation and desalination in more than 10 countries, has announced plans to invest $658 million in South Africa.
An announcement on Friday said this will help to boost trade and investment links between Saudi Arabia and the African continent.
Under the terms of the agreement, the Central Energy Fund of South Africa and ACWA Power will cooperate on the joint power project to be set up in South Africa. This is in addition to the pledge made by the Kingdom to invest $10 billion in South Africa. This pledge was made during the visit of South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to the Kingdom in July this year, when he met King Salman.
Speaking about the investment, Mohammad Abunayyan, chairman of ACWA Power, said: “We are pleased to enter into this agreement, which further strengthens our efforts supporting South Africa’s renewable energy program.”
“ACWA Power will build the 100MW Redstone concentrated solar thermal power (CSP) plant and will be capable of supplying power to 210,000 homes once operational,” South African Minister of Trade and Industry Dr. Rob Davies said in a recent statement.
He said that South Africa derives much of its power generation from coal, but it is also dependent on imported oil. The Kingdom is the biggest supplier of crude to South Africa, accounting for about 47 percent of its requirement.
“South Africa and Saudi Arabia maintain good political and economic relations and cooperate in a number of sectors. Saudi Arabia continues to be a close ally and South Africa’s strategic partner in the Middle East,” Davies said. “South Africa looks forward to new trade and investment opportunities, and to setting up joint ventures with Saudi companies.”
The statement said that the Saudi-South African Joint Economic Commission meeting, attended by Davies early this month, reached an agreement to cooperate in several areas ranging from energy, industry, mineral resources, finance and banking, to agriculture, tourism and transport.
The joint commission meeting also focused on investment in the energy sector by Saudi Arabia in South Africa. The investment relationship between South Africa and Saudi Arabia has been further strengthened with the signing of an investment cooperation agreement between Invest South Africa and Saudi Arabia General Investment Authority (SAGIA) recently. The agreement provides a framework for investment cooperation and will promote investment relations.


President Trump vows to remain steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia

Updated 11 min 6 sec ago
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President Trump vows to remain steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia

  • Saudi Arabia is a great ally in our fight against Iran, terrorism, he says.
  • Saudi Arabia has worked closely with us in keeping oil prices at reasonable levels, says Trump.

JEDDAH: US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday the United States intends to remain a "steadfast partner" of Saudi Arabia.

In a statement issued by the White House, Trump said he would not cancel multibillion-dollar military contracts with Riyadh. "If we foolishly cancel these contracts, Russia and China would be the enormous beneficiaries," he said.

Trump said US intelligence agencies were still studying the evidence of how Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, and who planned it.

"The crime against Jamal Khashoggi was a terrible one, and one that our country does not condone," he said. "Indeed, we have taken strong action against those already known to have participated in the murder. After great independent research, we now know many details of this horrible crime. We have already sanctioned 17 Saudis known to have been involved in the murder of Mr. Khashoggi, and the disposal of his body."

Trump said: "King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman vigorously deny any knowledge of the planning or execution of the murder of Mr. Khashoggi. Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information.

"We may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder of Mr. Jamal Khashoggi. In any case, our relationship is with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. They have been a great ally in our very important fight against Iran. The United States intends to remain a steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia to ensure the interests of our country, Israel and all other partners in the region. It is our paramount goal to fully eliminate the threat of terrorism throughout the world!"

Terming the world as "a very dangerous place," Trump blasted Iran for its malign activity in the region.

"Iran ... is responsible for a bloody proxy war against Saudi Arabia in Yemen, trying to destabilize Iraq’s fragile attempt at democracy, supporting the terror group Hezbollah in Lebanon, propping up dictator Bashar Assad in Syria (who has killed millions of his own citizens), and much more. Likewise, the Iranians have killed many Americans and other innocent people throughout the Middle East. Iran states openly, and with great force, 'Death to America!' and 'Death to Israel!' Iran is considered 'the world’s leading sponsor of terror'.”

He said: "Saudi Arabia would gladly withdraw from Yemen if the Iranians would agree to leave. They would immediately provide desperately needed humanitarian assistance. Additionally, Saudi Arabia has agreed to spend billions of dollars in leading the fight against Radical Islamic Terrorism."

Recalling his trip to Saudi Arabia last year, Trump said: "The Kingdom agreed to spend and invest $450 billion in the United States. This is a record amount of money. It will create hundreds of thousands of jobs, tremendous economic development, and much additional wealth for the United States. Of the $450 billion, $110 billion will be spent on the purchase of military equipment from Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and many other great US defense contractors. If we foolishly cancel these contracts, Russia and China would be the enormous beneficiaries – and very happy to acquire all of this newfound business. It would be a wonderful gift to them directly from the United States!"

Trump said Congress was "free" to "go in a different direction."

"I understand there are members of Congress who, for political or other reasons, would like to go in a different direction — and they are free to do so. I will consider whatever ideas are presented to me, but only if they are consistent with the absolute security and safety of America. After the United States, Saudi Arabia is the largest oil producing nation in the world. They have worked closely with us and have been very responsive to my requests to keeping oil prices at reasonable levels — so important for the world. As President of the United States I intend to ensure that, in a very dangerous world, America is pursuing its national interests and vigorously contesting countries that wish to do us harm. Very simply it is called America First!"