Europe to see $1 trillion energy bill in 2022

Europe to see $1 trillion energy bill in 2022
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Updated 13 January 2022

Europe to see $1 trillion energy bill in 2022

Europe to see $1 trillion energy bill in 2022
  • In addition, lower wind speeds limited green energy output

Surging natural gas prices and hyperinflation could see energy costs for consumers hit the $1 trillion mark on the continent, Bloomberg reported.

The figure compares to $500 billion in 2019.

While prior peaks were attributed to rallying oil prices, this peak is principally associated with the rising cost of heating households and powering green plants.

“Consumers and industry across the region are likely going to have to make some tough choices about their energy consumption,” Bloomberg reported, citing Investment Banking firm Citigroup analysts.

Natural gas – which accounts for a quarter of the continent’s energy requirements - saw benchmark prices rise as much as 250 percent last year. Since natural gas is used as a power plant fuel, climbing gas prices are reflected in electricity rates as well.

In addition, lower wind speeds limited green energy output.

Government driven initiatives – such as Sweden’s $664 million package subsidizing power consumers – are being implemented across the continent to ease the pain of skyrocketing energy costs.


Alibaba beats revenue estimates as lockdowns spur online demand

Alibaba beats revenue estimates as lockdowns spur online demand
Updated 8 sec ago

Alibaba beats revenue estimates as lockdowns spur online demand

Alibaba beats revenue estimates as lockdowns spur online demand

China’s Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. on Thursday beat market expectations for fourth-quarter revenue, powered by demand for its ecommerce and cloud services as lockdowns in the country’s biggest cities forced offices to shift to remote work.

US-listed Alibaba shares, which have lost roughly a third of their value so far this year, were up about 2 percent in premarket trading.

The e-commerce giant’s strong results come as Beijing extends support to its tech companies to avoid a hit from new COVID-19 outbreaks.

Demand for online services ranging from shopping to cloud-based products has skyrocketed in China as strict lockdowns prompt people to work, shop and keep themselves entertained from homes.

Overall, revenue rose 9 percent to 204.05 billion yuan ($30.35 billion) in the quarter.

Revenue in the cloud computing division rose 12 percent to 18.97 billion yuan in the reported quarter.

At the core commerce unit, its largest, revenue rose 8 percent to 140.33 billion yuan.

Analysts on average had expected revenue of 199.25 billion yuan, according to Refinitiv data.


Kremlin says West is to blame for Ukraine grain crisis

Kremlin says West is to blame for Ukraine grain crisis
Updated 6 min 6 sec ago

Kremlin says West is to blame for Ukraine grain crisis

Kremlin says West is to blame for Ukraine grain crisis
  • The Kremlin says Ukraine had made commercial shipping impossible by mining its waters

LONDON: The Kremlin on Thursday said the West only had itself to blame for a brewing food crisis due to problems getting Ukraine’s grain out to world markets, demanding the United States and its allies scrap what it cast as illegal sanctions.

Besides the death and devastation sown by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the war and the West’s attempt to isolate Russia as punishment have sent the price of grain, cooking oil, fertilizer and energy soaring, hurting global growth.

The United Nations, which says a global food crisis is deepening, is trying to broker a deal to unblock Ukraine’s grain exports though Western leaders have blamed Russia for holding the world to ransom by blockading Ukrainian ports.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov rejected those accusations and said the West was to blame for the situation.

“We categorically reject these accusations and, on the contrary, accuse Western countries that they have taken a number of illegal actions that led to this,” Peskov told reporters.

“They (the West) must cancel those illegal decisions that prevent the chartering of ships, that prevent the export of grain, and so on” so that supplies can resume, Peskov said.

Russia has captured some of Ukraine’s biggest seaports and its navy controls major transport routes in the Black Sea, where extensive mining has made commercial shipping dangerous.

Sanctions have also made it hard for Russian exporters to access vessels to move commodities to global markets.

Russia and Ukraine together account for nearly a third of global wheat supplies.

Chicago wheat futures hit a record price in March on supply concerns, and are still up by 30 percent since Feb. 24.

Ukraine is also a major exporter of corn, barley, sunflower oil and rapeseed oil, while Russia and Belarus — which has backed Moscow in the war and is also under sanctions — account for over 40 percent of global exports of the crop nutrient potash.

Time is running out to get some 22 million tons of grain out of Ukraine ahead of the new harvest as Russia continues to blockade the country’s Black Sea ports, Ukrainian lawmaker Yevheniia Kravchuk said on Wednesday.

“We have about maybe a month and a half before we start to collect the new harvest,” she told Reuters on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort of Davos, adding there was not sufficient space to store the fresh harvest.

Ukraine has lost the ports of Kherson and Mariupol to Russian occupation, and fears Russia may try to seize a third, Odesa.

The Kremlin says Ukraine had made commercial shipping impossible by mining its waters.

European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen is among those who have accused Moscow of using food exports as a weapon, while Kyiv has said Russia has stolen hundreds of thousands of tons of grain in areas their forces have occupied.
“Putin is trying to hold the world to ransom, and he is essentially weaponizing hunger and lack of food among the poorest people around the world,” British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said during a visit to Bosnia on Thursday.


UAE Wrap — Dubai issues eight new customs policies and announces DubaiPay as a new payment method

UAE Wrap — Dubai issues eight new customs policies and announces DubaiPay as a new payment method
Updated 20 min 53 sec ago

UAE Wrap — Dubai issues eight new customs policies and announces DubaiPay as a new payment method

UAE Wrap — Dubai issues eight new customs policies and announces DubaiPay as a new payment method

Dubai issues eight new customs policies and announces DubaiPay as a new payment method : UAE Wrap 

Eight new customs policies issued

Dubai Customs has issued eight new policies, in order to secure the flow of trade and facilitate the flow of goods and shipments to commercial markets without delay, according to a statement issued by the Dubai Media Office.

Over a period of time between January 2020 and April 2022, the Department of Tariff & Origin released eight major customs policies relating to passengers’ disclosures of currencies, negotiable financial instruments, precious metals and precious stones.

“These customs policies issued by the Tariff & Origin Department aim at the first place to facilitate trade by defining controls and procedures applied at Dubai Customs to implement customs measures related to trade agreements with member states that have agreements with the GCC countries,” said Ahmed Al-Khrousi, Director of Tariff & Origin Department in a statement.

The customs policies issued during this period dealt with enabling a country’s free trade agreements with other countries and determining the origin of its products for the purposes of applying non-preferential and preferential treatment to the originating products.

Additionally, the department established a customs policy which governs exchange conditions and controls for trade, as well as an Arab free trade zone, to facilitate the implementation of this agreement.

Furthermore, the organization released a customs policy on the conditions and controls for applying the Free Trade Agreement to the countries of the European Free Trade Association.

Additionally, the policies described the procedures for applying the TIR Carnet, which outlines how to deal with land-transported trade following TIR arrangements.

The TIR Carnet allows road transport of goods in transit between countries that are members of the TIR Convention without the payment of duties and taxes. 

Dubai announces DubaiPay as a new payment method for Al Ansari Exchange

DubaiPay’s payment services will be made available to Al Ansari Exchange users through its partnership with the Government of Dubai, represented by the Department of Finance (DoF) and Dubai Smart Government Establishment (DSG), according to a statement issued by the Dubai Media Office.

The agreement was signed by Wesam Al Abbas Lootah, CEO of DSG, Jamal Hamed Al Marri, executive director of Central Accounts at DoF, and Rashed A. Al Ansari, CEO of Al Ansari Exchange, at the headquarters of Digital Dubai.

Al Ansari Exchange, one of DubaiPay’s first private companies, will become one of the company’s service providers. DubaiPay is now available on Al Ansari Exchange’s mobile app as an alternative payment method.


Saudi Power Procurement Co. receives A1 rating from Moody's

Saudi Power Procurement Co. receives A1 rating from Moody's
Updated 35 min 53 sec ago

Saudi Power Procurement Co. receives A1 rating from Moody's

Saudi Power Procurement Co. receives A1 rating from Moody's

RIYADH: Saudi Power Procurement Co., the sole licensed principal buyer of electricity in Saudi Arabia, received an A1 rating from Moody's Investors Service on May 23.

The rating reflects SPPC’s low-risk profile, the transparency of its regulatory framework, and its ability to maintain a good liquidity profile despite the high seasonality of working capital, it said.

"The A1 issuer rating and stable outlook assigned to SPPC are aligned with that of the Government of Saudi Arabia, because of the company's very close integration into the public sector, with a clear public policy mandate that aligns SPPC's interests and objectives with those of the government," Moody's lead analyst on SPPC, Paul Feghaly, said. 

 


BlackRock, Fidelity among bidders for UAE’s Borouge $2bn IPO: Bloomberg

BlackRock, Fidelity among bidders for UAE’s Borouge $2bn IPO: Bloomberg
Updated 40 min 34 sec ago

BlackRock, Fidelity among bidders for UAE’s Borouge $2bn IPO: Bloomberg

BlackRock, Fidelity among bidders for UAE’s Borouge $2bn IPO: Bloomberg

RIYADH: Borouge’s $2 billion initial public offering has drawn interest from big investors, including the world’s largest asset manager BlackRock Inc. and Fidelity.

The UAE-based firm received bids from the two international funds for the share sale that could value it at $20 billion at listing, Bloomberg reported citing unnamed sources.

Borouge had generated orders at 17 times the amount offered as of mid-day May 25, the third day of book-building, which will run until May 30, Bloomberg’s sources noted.

Other sources told Al Arabiya that the total requests reached 21 times coverage, representing almost $40 billion, by the end of the third day on May 25.

Borouge, which is a joint venture between Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. and Austria’s chemical producer Borealis, produces plastics used in a wide range of products.

Representatives for Adnoc and BlackRock declined to comment to Bloomberg on the news.