Cement factories in Egypt to operate with natural gas instead of coal

Cement factories in Egypt to operate with natural gas instead of coal
Liquified Petroleum Gas Spheres in Oil and Gas Process Plant in Egypt. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 21 September 2021

Cement factories in Egypt to operate with natural gas instead of coal

Cement factories in Egypt to operate with natural gas instead of coal

RIYADH: Cement companies in Egypt are seeking to return to operating with natural gas fuels instead of coal, after nearly seven years of the government’s decision to compel companies to use a mixture of fuels from coal and waste, Head of Industrials Sector at the Arab African International Securities Company, Rehan Hamza, said.

The continuous pumping of natural gas, and the rise in coal prices, will be guarantors of a stable return for cement factories in Egypt to rely on natural gas, she said in an interview with Al Arabiya.

The Export Council for Building Materials has prepared technical studies on the economic feasibility of cement factories returning to work with natural gas in light of rising coal prices to record levels, in addition to the high cost of shipping and import, and the abundance of local natural gas, she said. The study will be presented to the Ministry of Trade and Industry within days,

The Egyptian Cabinet issued a decision to reduce the price of natural gas for industry to $4.5 per million thermal unit, in March last year.


'Where's the long-term plans?' BlackRock chief calls out governments over climate change

'Where's the long-term plans?' BlackRock chief calls out governments over climate change
Updated 15 sec ago

'Where's the long-term plans?' BlackRock chief calls out governments over climate change

'Where's the long-term plans?' BlackRock chief calls out governments over climate change

The head of one of the world’s largest asset management companies has called out governments across the globe for not having long-term plans to tackle climate change.

Speaking at the Future Investment Initiative Forum in Riyadh, Larry Fink, Chairman and CEO of US-based firm BlackRock, called on world leaders to show more foresight when it comes to solving issues facing humanity.

"Capital is abundant and needs to be put in work,” he said, adding: "We have to re-imagine how to bring finance forward to effectuate the change of climate change risks.

“We do not have that platform in the world. We don't have long-term planning by most governments to effectuate these long-term problems."


$11bn invested in sustainability projects since 2019, says Blackstone Group CEO

$11bn invested in sustainability projects since 2019, says Blackstone Group CEO
Updated 14 min 26 sec ago

$11bn invested in sustainability projects since 2019, says Blackstone Group CEO

$11bn invested in sustainability projects since 2019, says Blackstone Group CEO

RIYADH: Some $11 billion has been ploughed into sustainability-linked projects over the past two years, according to the head of one of the world’s largest alternative investment companies.

Stephen A. Schwarzman, chairman, CEO and co-founder of The Blackstone Group, was speaking at the Future Investment Initiative Forum in Riyadh.


UK's Heathrow Airport flags tepid travel recovery until 2026

UK's Heathrow Airport flags tepid travel recovery until 2026
Getty Images
Updated 32 min 46 sec ago

UK's Heathrow Airport flags tepid travel recovery until 2026

UK's Heathrow Airport flags tepid travel recovery until 2026
  • Heathrow, which last year lost its crown as Europe's busiest hub to Paris, has suffered heavy losses during the pandemic

Britain's Heathrow Airport said it was still reporting losses and does not expect air traffic to recover completely until at least 2026 even as the travel industry gathered steam in the third quarter on easing restrictions.


The London airport said passenger numbers in the third quarter recovered to 28 percent and cargo to 90 percent of pre-pandemic levels, although it has lost 3.4 billion pounds ($4.68 billion) cumulatively since the start of the pandemic.


Heathrow, which last year lost its crown as Europe's busiest hub to Paris, has suffered heavy losses during the pandemic and has since tried to claw back gains by raising its charges to airlines.


Last week, the UK aviation regulator said Heathrow will not be permitted to raise passenger charges by as much as it had wanted, but airlines opposed the scale of the hike as the hub and carriers battle to recoup pandemic losses.


"The CAA's (Civil Aviation Authority's) Initial Proposals do not go far enough to ensure that investors can achieve a fair return," Heathrow said in a statement on Tuesday.


The airport, which is owned by Spain's Ferrovial, the Qatar Investment Authority and China Investment Corp among others, said its shareholders have achieved negative returns in real-term over the last 15 years.


Heathrow, Britain's biggest airport, said it had 4.1 billion pounds of cash to be able to come through until the market recovers.


Dutch pension fund giant ABP to sell $17.5bn of fossil fuel assets

Dutch pension fund giant ABP to sell $17.5bn of fossil fuel assets
Image: Shutterstock
Updated 40 min 19 sec ago

Dutch pension fund giant ABP to sell $17.5bn of fossil fuel assets

Dutch pension fund giant ABP to sell $17.5bn of fossil fuel assets
  • Wortmann had said as recently as June that exiting fossil fuel investments was "not the solution" to global warming

Dutch pension fund ABP, one of the world's largest, will divest 15 billion euros ($17.5 billion) of investments in fossil fuel producers by 2023, it said on Tuesday, citing concern over global warming.


After the planned sale, which represents 3 percent of the fund's total assets, ABP intends to increase investment in renewable energy where possible, chair Corien Wortmann said in a statement.


The decision ahead of next week's COP26 United Nations climate conference marks a major turnaround for the civil servants' fund, which has 528 billion euros in assets under management.


Wortmann had said as recently as June that exiting fossil fuel investments was "not the solution" to global warming, despite pressure from environmental activists and a growing number of the fund's own participants.


Announcing Tuesday's decision she cited concerns of fund participants and their employers.


"The ABP Board sees the need and urgency for a change of course," she said. "We (are parting) with our investments in fossil fuel producers because we see insufficient opportunity for us as a shareholder to push for the necessary, significant acceleration of the energy transition at these companies."


She said that in the future the fund would focus on engagement with large consumers of fossil fuel such as electricity companies, the automobile industry and aviation industry.


"Using our influence as a shareholder, ABP will encourage companies that use fossil fuels to become more sustainable."
The fund said it did not expect the decision to affect its long-term returns.


FII: Forum on ‘Investing on Humanity’ opens in Riyadh

FII: Forum on ‘Investing on Humanity’ opens in Riyadh
Updated 9 min 9 sec ago

FII: Forum on ‘Investing on Humanity’ opens in Riyadh

FII: Forum on ‘Investing on Humanity’ opens in Riyadh

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s Future Investment Initiative kicked off in Riyadh, with the three-day forum themed “Invest in Humanity” which will include talks on artificial intelligence, robotics, education, healthcare and sustainability.

Watch the opening events at FII:

With more than 250 expert speakers from the economic, business, education and corporate worlds, discussions at the platform dubbed the Davos in the Desert will center on investments that aim to create the greatest benefits for humanity, as the global community charts a new course post-COVID-19 pandemic.

The conference opened with a chilling video presentation of natural disasters and the impact of climate change, followed by a performance by Gloria Gaynor’s with her classic ‘I Will Survive.’

Watch Gloria Gaynor’s number at FII:

The American singer was the first recipient of the FII Award for Humanity.