Saudi Arabia to become ‘major exporter’ of renewable energy

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih attends the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, on Thursday. (REUTERS/Ruben Sprich)
Updated 20 January 2017

Saudi Arabia to become ‘major exporter’ of renewable energy

DAVOS, Switzerland: Saudi Arabia aims to become a “major exporter” of renewable energy, its energy minister has revealed. 
Khalid Al-Falih said there are plans to allow for the export of cleanly produced electricity to Europe.
“If the region gets connected to Europe for example, then solar (power) that is produced in Saudi Arabia can be exported all the way to Europe through a network,” he told Arab News on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos.
“When it’s sunny in the region, it’s dark and cloudy sometimes in Europe… So we can be a major exporter.”
Such an electricity supply could be routed through Egypt, and there were “projects underway” to support this, Al-Falih said.
Al-Falih said on Monday that Saudi Arabia is to launch a renewable energy program that is expected to involve investment of between $30 billion and $50 billion by 2023.
Riyadh plans to start the first round of bidding for projects under the program, which would produce 10 gigawatts of power.
Aside from the domestic consumption of electricity, Al-Falih said there was an opportunity to sell both power derived from “green” methods and the materials used to produce renewable energy, like solar panels or wind turbines.
“We will export the power itself, we will export the components and services,” he said.
Saudi Arabia is attempting to diversify its economy after it was hit hard by the oil-price crash.
An OPEC deal saw an oil production cut come into force at the beginning of this year, something Al-Falih indicated was being adhered to.
“Everybody I talk to is not only committing, some of them have actually told me that they have exceeded their commitments,” he said.
He would not speculate on how the oil price would look later this year, but said the current figure includes “an element of uncertainty” about compliance with the Opec production cut deal.
“I tend to think that uncertainty is misplaced,” Al-Falih said. “Once you remove that, with data coming in the weeks to come, you can only imagine where the price will go.”  


Apple, Google drop Fortnite from app stores over payments

Updated 14 August 2020

Apple, Google drop Fortnite from app stores over payments

  • Google said Fortnite will remain available on Android, just not through its app store
  • Apple and Google both take a 30% cut from in-app revenue purchases in games

NEW YORK: Apple and Google dropped the popular game Fortnite from their app stores after the game’s developer introduced a direct payment plan that bypasses their platforms.
Apple and Google both take a 30% cut from in-app revenue purchases in games, which has long been a sore spot with developers.
Fortnite is free, but users can pay for in game accoutrements like weapons and skins. Its developer, Epic Games, said in a blog post Thursday that it was introducing Epic Direct payments, a direct payment plan for Apple’s iOS and Google Play. Epic said the system is the same payment system it already uses to process payments on PC and Mac computers and Android phones.
Apple and Google said the service violates their guidelines.
“Epic enabled a feature in its app which was not reviewed or approved by Apple, and they did so with the express intent of violating the App Store guidelines regarding in-app payments that apply to every developer who sells digital goods or services,” Apple said in statement.
Google said Fortnite will remain available on Android, just not through its app store. Android users can download the app from other app stores, although that’s generally not an option for iPhone users.
Epic Games did not immediately return a request for comment. Epic’s Fortnite Twitter account said the company would debut a new short film called “Nineteen Eighty-Fortnite,” a seeming parody of Apple’s iconic “1984” commercial that introduced the Macintosh computer. It has also filed a complaint against Apple in the US District Court in Northern California for dropping Fortnite.