Ireland to ban sales of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030

The “Climate Action Plan” also includes the elimination of non-recyclable plastic and higher fees on the production of materials that are difficult to recycle. (File/AFP)
Updated 18 June 2019

Ireland to ban sales of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030

  • The government hopes to have 950,000 electric vehicles on Irish roads by 2030
  • The bigger goal is to put Ireland on a path to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050

LONDON: Ireland has announced it will ban the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030 as part of its new climate change plan.
The government hopes to have 950,000 electric vehicles on Irish roads by then, supported by a network of charging stations.
The measure is one of 180 proposals covering business, construction, transport, agriculture and waste management intended to put Ireland on a path to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
“Our approach will be to nudge people and businesses to change behavior and adapt new technologies through incentives, disincentives, regulations and information,” said Prime Minister Leo Varadkar.
“Our objective... is to transition to a low-carbon and climate-resilient society. Our call to action in the fight to save our planet,” he added.
Dublin hopes to increase its level of electricity generated from renewable energy from 30 percent of the total mix to 70 percent by 2030.
The “Climate Action Plan” also includes the elimination of non-recyclable plastic and higher fees on the production of materials that are difficult to recycle.
Friends of the Earth Director Oisin Coghlan called the plan “the biggest innovation in Irish climate policy in 20 years.”
But Greenpeace criticized the government for not committing to the 2050 target, only making it a goal.


Saudi central bank ready for any Aramco-related liquidity squeeze

Updated 10 December 2019

Saudi central bank ready for any Aramco-related liquidity squeeze

  • Aramco’s long-awaited listing on the Saudi Arabian stock exchange is due on Wednesday
  • The central bank has set up a team to closely monitor all indicators in the banking system during the IPO

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s central bank is ready for any liquidity squeeze from Saudi Aramco’s initial public offering (IPO) and is closely monitoring local banks, its governor said, after heavy demand for loans to buy the stock.
Aramco’s long-awaited listing on the Saudi Arabian stock exchange is due on Wednesday, completing the largest IPO on record and raising $25.6 billion from retail and institutional buyers who took on debt to back their orders.
“We don’t rule out that there might be squeeze of liquidity later on, that’s why I am ready and stand ready to intervene,” Ahmed Al-Kholifey told Reuters.
Saudis had clamoured to own part of the “crown jewel” of the world’s top oil exporter in the lead up to its IPO, with Aramco’s institutional tranche 6.2 times oversubscribed, while more than 5 million individuals subscribed to a retail tranche.
The Aramco IPO is the centerpiece of the Saudi crown prince’s plans to diversify the economy away from a reliance on oil, as the money will be reinvested by the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) to promote growth in other sectors.
During the IPO process, the loan-to-deposit ratio (LDR) at some banks had exceeded a 90% “soft guideline” set by the regulator, but the ratio improved after the allocation process ended, Kholifey said in an interview.
“So far no bank has come to ask for liquidity from the central bank. We are ready to intervene in case there is a squeeze of liquidity but most of the indicators right now are not worrying,” Kholifey added.
MONITORING TEAM
The central bank has set up a team specifically to closely monitor all indicators in the banking system during the IPO process, and it held meetings on a daily basis.
“I don’t think in the near future they will settle, we have to keep monitoring the situation until we see things are normal, especially the LDR,” he said.
Saudi corporates snapped up the biggest percentage of allocations to the Aramco IPO at 37.5% and Saudi government institutions were allocated 13.2% of the institutional tranche, the latest figures issued by the deal’s lead bank showed.
Kholifey said that less than 2% of retail subscriptions were leveraged, and most of the bank financing went to high-net-worth individuals and institutional buyers.
He expects most of the IPO proceeds to be invested locally by the PIF, given that most of subscription were internal.
Riyadh scaled back its original IPO plans, scrapping an international roadshow to focus on marketing Aramco to Saudi investors and Gulf Arab allies. It has remained silent on when or where it might list Aramco stock abroad.