Saudi Aramco and ADNOC sign MoU to explore investment opportunities in gas sector

Saudi Aramco and ADNOC sign strategic cooperation agreement on natural gas and LNG. (SPA)
Updated 12 November 2018
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Saudi Aramco and ADNOC sign MoU to explore investment opportunities in gas sector

  • Two of the worlds largest oil companies have signed a cooperation agreement to meet global demands for natural gas
  • Saudi Aramco and UAE's ADNOC have been focusing on raising their gas production

ABU DHABI: The state energy giants of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, Aramco and ADNOC, signed a cooperation deal Monday aimed at bolstering gas production and revenue.
The agreement was signed by CEO of Saudi Aramco Amin Hassan Al-Nasser and UAE Minister of State and CEO of ADNOC Group Sultan Ahmed Al-Jaber.
The framework deal saw the two biggest Arab oil firms agree to jointly explore investment opportunities and exchange technical expertise as they seek to tap into natural gas and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) markets.
The deal also follows an agreement between the two companies earlier this year to participate in an integrated refining and petrochemical project in India.
“This agreement focuses on attractive and valuable investment opportunities in the field of natural gas and liquefied natural gas and represents a collaborative framework between two global giants of the oil and gas industry,” said Al-Nasser.
“Enhancing cooperation with ADNOC will have a positive impact on the sustainability objectives and will benefit the two companies economically,” he said, adding “we have recently announced our intention to invest in a large-scale refinery on the western coast of India.”
“Saudi Aramco is expanding both conventional and non-conventional gas operations and this new agreement helps us accelerate growth in natural gas and liquefied natural gas, enhance our competitive advantage, diversify our business and expand our international gas investment activities,” Al-Nasser said.
Meanwhile, Al-Jaber said the UAE and Saudi Arabia have a close relationship based on history, vision and common strategic interests. 
“Increased cooperation between ADNOC and Aramco will ensure greater energy security and long-term economic prosperity for both nations,” Al-Jaber said.
No further details on the specifics of the agreement were provided but the two companies have been focusing on raising their gas production.
Last week, UAE’s supreme petroleum council approved investments worth $132 billion over the next five years to boost oil and gas production.
Under the investment plan, both countries aim to become self sufficient in natural gas and later net exporters.
As part of its energy push, ADNOC on Sunday granted French major Total an exploration and production concession agreement for natural gas.
LNG is the fastest growing hydrocarbon at 4% per annum. Global demand for this gas is expected to exceed 500 million tons per year by 2035, up from the demand levels in 2017 which amounted to about 300 million tons. 
The concession agreement aims at producing one billion cubic feet daily of gas by 2030.
ADNOC Gas LNG, a subsidiary of ADNOC, is a reliable supplier of LNG. It has a proven track record of 40 years in this field and accounts for 2% of the global market share of LNG.

* With AFP


UAE property developers’ earnings give Gulf markets a boost

Updated 17 February 2019
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UAE property developers’ earnings give Gulf markets a boost

  • Real estate sector gets confidence boost
  • DAMAC gains despite 87 pct drop in Q4 net profits

DUBAI: Most stock markets in the Middle East closed higher on Sunday, reflecting a rally in global stock markets on Friday, and were also boosted by better-than-expected company results, particularly in real estate.

The Abu Dhabi index gained 0.7 percent and the Dubai index 0.6 percent, as two of the largest property developers in the United Arab Emirates posted positive fourth-quarter financial results last week that beat market expectations.

“The market is starting to rebuild confidence in earnings as a driver for sentiment,” said Arqaam Capital in a research note. “Sentiment on the UAE was very weak in 2018, specifically for real estate, on concerns over oversupply risk, pricing pressure that is leading to extended payment plans, and a rental yield compression that is continuing to fall,” Arqaam said.

“But Q4 numbers provided evidence that a few developers have emerged as winners (Emaar Co’s, Aldar) out of market consolidation.” Emaar Properties, Dubai’s largest listed developer, reported a 27 percent rise in fourth-quarter profit.

The stock rose 2 percent on Sunday. DAMAC Properties closed up 0.8 percent, despite having reported a nearly 60 percent fall in full-year profit and an 87 percent drop in fourth-quarter net profits.

In Abu Dhabi, Aldar Properties gained 3.6 percent. Last week, the developer reported a rise in fourth-quarter earnings and higher dividends for 2018. In other sectors, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank rose 0.5 percent after saying it had no merger and acquisition plans. This was in response to a Bloomberg report last week which said the bank was considering such options.

The Saudi index closed 0.4 percent down, in contrast to the rest of the region’s markets. Arab National Bank reported an increase in full- year net profit to 3.13 billion riyals ($834.62 million) from 3.03 billion riyals one year earlier.

The stock remained unchanged and this failed to give support to the banking sector. Alinma Bank < 1150.SE> and Al Rajhi Banking & Investment Corp. lost 0.3 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively.

In Egypt, where the main index gained 1.4 percent, Orascom Investment Holding, up 3.2 percent, was among the stocks attracting the highest trading volume. Shares in the company jumped last week after its chairman, Egyptian billionaire businessman Naguib Sawiris, said he saw possible investment opportunities in North Korea if a summit between its leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump later this month was successful.

SAUDI The index lost 0.4 pct to 8,592 points ARABIA DUBAI The index rose 0.6 pct to 2,550 points ABU DHABI The index rose 0.7 pct to 5,070 points QATAR The index gained 0.7 pct to 10,011 points EGYPT The index rose 1.4 pct to 15,199 points KUWAIT The index gainedd 0.1 pct to 5,427 points OMAN The index was down 0.8 pct at 4,077 points BAHRAIN

The index went up 0.6 pct to 1,381 points ($1 = 3.7502 riyals)