14% of buildings at structural risk

Updated 21 July 2013

14% of buildings at structural risk

The structural integrity of 14 percent of the residential and government buildings in the Kingdom have exceeded their lifespan, according to General Secretary of Saudi Umran Society Khalid Al-Taiash.
Al-Taiash confirmed that the life of some buildings of government entities exceeded 50 years despite some adjustments and renovation work in the buildings.
He said buildings in central regions are able to withstand aging more than buildings in the western and eastern regions, as salt and water leakage lead to the corrosion of reinforced concrete buildings, which reduces the life span of the buildings. Reinforced concrete buildings in more arid regions are capable of resisting erosion for longer periods, he said.
He stated that the city of Riyadh has been witnessing a mega urban expansion in the last 40 years but the lifespan of the majority of buildings in Riyadh does not exceed 30 years.
The scientific research confirmed that the lifespan of the buildings is 50 years old unless exposed to salt or water leaks, Al-Taiash said.
Al-Taiash said there are various factors that prolong the lifespan of buildings, such as the regular maintenance and the use of stone. Using stone instead of reinforced concrete can extend the life of a building considerably.
He said maintenance workers in Saudi Arabia are not qualified and the majority of people who work in maintenance are expatriates who have neither the skills nor the tools. They picked up maintenance work through working here in Saudi Arabia. Al-Taiash said maintenance specialists in Saudi Arabia are very expensive.
In Europe, no one can work in maintenance before getting a license that enables him to work in buildings, he said.

Oil coup for Saudi Arabia as output cuts are extended

Updated 06 June 2020

Oil coup for Saudi Arabia as output cuts are extended

  • ‘Compliance is vital,’ Prince Abdul Aziz says

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia pulled off a coup in the world of oil diplomacy on Saturday with an agreement to extend the historic output cuts credited with pulling energy markets out of chaos.

At a virtual meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC producersled by Russia, 23 exporters agreed to roll over the record-breaking cuts until the end of July, with a monthly option to renew the agreement after that.

The deal has strict provisions against producers who fail to comply. Some countries, notably Iraq and Nigeria, have been accused of ignoring the agreed caps on crude production.

“Effective compliance is vital if we are to secure the hard-won stability in global oil markets and restore confidence in the unity and effectiveness of the OPEC+ group,” said Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, the Saudi Energy Minister. “This stability and positive market sentiment will bring its own rewards.”

OPEC+ agreed unanimously that countries that have fallen short of full compliance since May 1 will make up that shortfall over the summer months and will adhere to production limits in the future.

Compliance will be assessed at monthly ministerial monitoring meetings until the end of the year. “We must be vigilant. Each of the 23 countries represented here must be on guard for any signs of backsliding from their commitments,” Prince Abdul Aziz said.

“All OPEC+ partners must deliver on their pledges for the collective pledges to be sustained. Each country has to adhere to its commitment to restrain production along the agreed guidelines.”

The minister referred to the recent “low point” when American crude briefly traded below zero, but said the OPEC+ deal, bolstered by extra voluntary cuts from Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait, had helped the global market over the worst.

Brent crude, the global benchmark, has more than doubled in price since the cuts took effect. “Demand is returning as big oil-consuming economies emerge from pandemic lockdown,” Prince Abdul Aziz said. “Through our commitment to a proactive policy, within a cohesive and collective framework, we are restoring confidence and stability to global oil markets. Today, we have grounds to be cautiously optimistic about the future.”

Energy experts welcomed the deal, but echoed the minister’s caution. “This is an important success for OPEC+. It shows ability to deliver, willingness to address discipline, and coherence in the approach,” saidChristof Ruehl of the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University.

“The problem is that the more OPEC+ succeeds, the easier it becomes for private producers to enjoy the fruits of its labor.”