Iraq, UAE’s Masdar to build 5 solar power plants in new clean energy push

Iraq, UAE’s Masdar to build 5 solar power plants in new clean energy push
The step comes as the first stage taken by the Iraqi government to rely on alternative, clean, and renewable energies in the production of electrical energy. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 07 October 2021

Iraq, UAE’s Masdar to build 5 solar power plants in new clean energy push

Iraq, UAE’s Masdar to build 5 solar power plants in new clean energy push
  • The first phase will include the production and generation of 1,000 MW out of a total capacity of 2,000 MW

RIYADH: The UAE and Iraq signed on Wednesday a contract to build five electric power plants using solar energy, Iraqi News Agency (INA) reported.

Abu Dhabi Future Energy Co. (Masdar) and the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity and the National Investment Authority signed the contract for the plants.

The first phase will include the production and generation of 1,000 MW out of a total capacity of 2,000 MW, a statement by the media spokesman for the Prime Minister of Iraq, Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, revealed in a statement.

The step comes as the first stage taken by the Iraqi government to rely on alternative, clean, and renewable energies in the production of electrical energy, and to meet the country's energy needs.

Iraqi Oil Minister Ihsan Abdul-Jabbar earlier said it was expecting to sign contracts with Masdar until 2025, targeting the production of 10 to 12 gigawatts (GW), representing about 25 percent of Iraq’s electricity needs that exceed 40 GW.


Saudi TASI rallies for a tenth day as investors eye earnings: Closing bell

Saudi TASI rallies for a tenth day as investors eye earnings: Closing bell
Updated 19 sec ago

Saudi TASI rallies for a tenth day as investors eye earnings: Closing bell

Saudi TASI rallies for a tenth day as investors eye earnings: Closing bell

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s main stock index closed higher on Thursday, holding onto strong gains from the past nine sessions, as investor sentiment rose with the start of the earnings season.

TASI gained 0.3 percent to reach 12,291 points, reversing losses from earlier today, while the parallel market Nomu slipped 0.3 percent to close at 26,071 points.

Saudi oil giant Aramco recouped morning losses to end 0.4 percent higher. The Kingdom’s largest lender, the Saudi National Bank, edged down by 0.13 percent.

The Gulf’s leading miner Saudi Arabian Mining Co., or Ma’aden, closed at its highest value since listing of SR93.7 ($25).

Al Moammar Information Systems Co., MIS, saw a 0.3 percent increase in its share price.

Earlier, MIS announced the launch of a system to provide cloud management solutions in Saudi Arabia, following a deal with BMC Software.

Nama Chemicals Co. topped the gainers, surging 5.9 percent to SR41.5.

Shares in Yanbu National Petrochemical Co., known as Yansab, led the losses, down 2.6 percent despite posting a 126-percent jump in net profit in 2021.

In energy trading, Brent crude reached $88 per barrel, and US WTI crude oil neared $87 per barrel as of 3:34 p.m. Saudi time.


Saudi oil exports and production continue to rise, highest since April 2020: JODI

Saudi oil exports and production continue to rise, highest since April 2020: JODI
Updated 27 min 36 sec ago

Saudi oil exports and production continue to rise, highest since April 2020: JODI

Saudi oil exports and production continue to rise, highest since April 2020: JODI

Saud Arabia's crude oil exports and production went up again in November to reach their highest levels since April 2020, according to the Joint Organisations Data Initiative.

Saudi crude oil exports grew by 116,000 barrels per day in November to 6.95 million barrels per day.

This corresponded to a monthly 1.7 percent increase from 6.83 million bpd in October, JODI revealed in its latest report.

In annual terms, outgoing oil shipments were up by 9.4 percent.

Additionally, crude oil production grew by 132,000 bpd in November to 9.91 million bpd. Crude output rose by 1.3 percent from 9.78 million bpd in October.

This was accompanied by a 10.5 percent yearly growth.

Moreover, crude closing stocks decreased by 4.43 million barrels from October to 132.4 million barrels in November, the lowest ever level on record. Crude stocks also fell by 11.1 million barrels, or 7.7 percent, from November 2020

Refinery intake increased by 161,000 bpd, or 6.2 percent, from a month earlier to 2.77 million bpd in November.

The direct use of crude oil, which measures oil usage for generating electricity, went up by 3.4 percent to 0.339 million bpd. This followed the steep 40 percent decline experienced in the prior month.

 


Russian central bank proposes banning cryptocurrencies, crypto mining

Russian central bank proposes banning cryptocurrencies, crypto mining
Image: Shutterstock
Updated 53 min 58 sec ago

Russian central bank proposes banning cryptocurrencies, crypto mining

Russian central bank proposes banning cryptocurrencies, crypto mining
  • Russians are active cryptocurrency users, the central bank said, with an annual transaction volume of about $5 billion

Russia's central bank on Thursday proposed banning the use and mining of cryptocurrencies on Russian territory, citing threats to financial stability, citizens' wellbeing and its monetary policy sovereignty.


Russia has argued for years against cryptocurrencies, saying they could be used in money laundering or to finance terrorism.

It eventually gave them legal status in 2020 but banned their use as a means of payment.


In December, the price of bitcoin fell after Reuters reported, citing sources, that Russia's regulator was in favour of a complete ban on cryptocurrencies.


In a report published on Thursday, the central bank said speculative demand primarily determined cryptocurrencies' rapid growth and that they carried characteristics of a financial pyramid, warning that bubbles in the market could form, threatening financial stability and citizens.


The bank proposed preventing financial institutions from carrying out any operations with cryptocurrencies and said mechanisms should be developed to block transactions aimed at buying or selling cryptocurrencies for fiat, or traditional currencies. The proposed ban includes crypto exchanges.


Russians are active cryptocurrency users, the central bank said, with an annual transaction volume of about $5 billion.


Russia is the world's third-largest player in bitcoin mining, behind the United States and Kazakhstan, though the latter may see a miner exodus over fears of tightening regulation following unrest earlier this month.


The central bank said crypto mining created problems for energy consumption.

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are "mined" by powerful computers that compete against others hooked up to a global network to solve complex mathematical puzzles.

The process guzzles electricity and is often powered by fossil fuels.


"The best solution is to introduce a ban on cryptocurrency mining in Russia," the bank said.


Saudi energy ministry signs hydrogen projects with NEOM, TRSDC, other ministries

Saudi energy ministry signs hydrogen projects with NEOM, TRSDC, other ministries
Image: Shutterstock
Updated 56 min 31 sec ago

Saudi energy ministry signs hydrogen projects with NEOM, TRSDC, other ministries

Saudi energy ministry signs hydrogen projects with NEOM, TRSDC, other ministries

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Energy is signing today initial agreements with several local and government stakeholders, for projects where hydrogen is to be used in the transport sector. 

The ministry is partnering with the Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services, Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources, as well as the Ministry of Environment, Water, and Agriculture. 

Other stakeholders who are attending the signing ceremony also include the Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu, NEOM, Saudi Green Initiative, Saudi Railway Company, Princess Norah Mint Abdul Rahman University, the Royal Commission for Makkah City and Holy Sites, The Red Sea Development Company, Saudi Ground Services, and the Saudi Technology Development and Investment Company. 

The MoUs singing will take place at The Ritz Carlton Hotel in Riyadh. 


Egypt, South Korea sign a $1bn financing agreement 

Egypt, South Korea sign a $1bn financing agreement 
Updated 20 January 2022

Egypt, South Korea sign a $1bn financing agreement 

Egypt, South Korea sign a $1bn financing agreement 

RIYADH: Egypt signed a $1 billion financing agreement with South Korea on Thursday, in addition to rubber stamping a $8.9 million grant.

The agreement’s duration is five years, from 2022 to 2026, Asharq reported

The signing of the agreements coincides with the two-day official visit of South Korean president Moon Jae-in — the first visit in 16 years by a leader of the country.

Trade exchange between Egypt and South Korea increased by 23.6 percent in the first 10 months of 2021 to hit $1.9 billion — up from $1.6 billion during the same period last year, Asharq reported citing CAPMAS.