Saudi Aramco’s Amin Nasser warms the night in glittering Davos reception

Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser thanked guests for their continuing collaboration with the company at a function in the InterContinental hotel, in Davos. (Courtesy WEF)
Updated 25 January 2019

Saudi Aramco’s Amin Nasser warms the night in glittering Davos reception

  • The world’s biggest oil company greeted political and business leaders at the InterContinental hotel
  • The guests included ministers and oil executives from Saudi Arabia and top business executives and financiers from around the world

DAVOS: Saudi Aramco welcomed a delegation of the global elite to a reception at the World Economic Forum which, even by the glittering standards of Davos, was a sumptuous affair.

Hosted by CEO Amin Nasser, the world’s biggest oil company greeted political and business leaders at the InterContinental hotel, a short drive through the ice night from the main Congress Hall venue.

Though the temperature outside was well below zero, the hospitality in the cavernous reception hall was warm. The guests — including ministers and oil executives from Saudi Arabia and top business executives and financiers from around the world — were treated to a selection of gourmet canapés and refreshments, and all seemed to be enjoying the convivial atmosphere.

Joe Kaeser, chief executive of the German engineering giant Siemens, said: “This is a pleasant break from the back-to-back business meetings of Davos.” His company is in the running for some of the big contracts on prospect in the mega-projects underway in the Kingdom as part of the Vision 2030 diversification strategy.

The guests were treated to an extravagant visual exhibition of the Manifa oilfield off the Saudi Arabian Gulf coast, which has been praised throughout the world for its innovative approach to combining oil exploration with environmental concern.

During its annual meeting the World Economic Forum recognized another Aramco project, the Uthmaniyah gas plant, as a “lighthouse” manufacturing facility and a technology leader in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).

Nasser said: “The recognition of the Uthmaniyah Gas Plant demonstrates Saudi Aramco’s shift to transform and adapt in the rapidly changing global energy landscape. Through the application of 4IR technologies, we can be at the forefront of the industry helping to shape the future of energy as part of Saudi Aramco’s mission to supply oil and gas around the world safely and reliably.”

In a short speech, Nasser thanked the guests for their continuing collaboration with Aramco, before handing over to Saudi musicians, including Madani Abadi on strings.

He revealed that Abadi was a former Aramco employee, and joked: “He used to work for us, but now he has a much better job.”


Singapore Airlines drops ‘flights to nowhere’ after outcry

Updated 29 September 2020

Singapore Airlines drops ‘flights to nowhere’ after outcry

  • Several carriers have been offering short flights that start and end at the same airport to raise cash

SINGAPORE: Singapore Airlines said Tuesday it had scrapped plans for “flights to nowhere” aimed at boosting its coronavirus-hit finances after an outcry over the environmental impact.
With the aviation industry in deep crisis, several carriers – including in Australia, Japan and Taiwan – have been offering short flights that start and end at the same airport to raise cash.
They are designed for travel-starved people keen to fly at a time of virus-related restrictions, and have proved surprisingly popular.
But Singapore’s flag carrier – which has grounded nearly all its planes and cut thousands of jobs – said it had ditched the idea following a review.
The carrier has come up with alternative ideas to raise revenue, including offering customers tours of aircraft and offering them the chance to dine inside an Airbus A380, the world’s biggest commercial airliner.
Environmental activists had voiced opposition to Singapore Airlines launching “flights to nowhere,” with group SG Climate Rally saying they would encourage “carbon-intensive travel for no good reason.”
“We believe air travel has always caused environmental harm, and it is now an opportune moment for us to think seriously about transitions instead of yearning to return to a destructive status quo.”
The airline said earlier this month it was cutting about 4,300 jobs, or 20 percent of its workforce, the latest carrier to make massive layoffs.
The International Air Transport Association estimates that airlines operating in the Asia-Pacific region stand to lose a combined $27.8 billion this year.
The group also forecasts that global air traffic is unlikely to return to pre-coronavirus levels until at least 2024.