Doha Gas Exporting Forum: Putin pledges uninterrupted gas supplies to the world

Doha Gas Exporting Forum: Putin pledges uninterrupted gas supplies to the world
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Updated 22 February 2022

Doha Gas Exporting Forum: Putin pledges uninterrupted gas supplies to the world

Doha Gas Exporting Forum: Putin pledges uninterrupted gas supplies to the world

The sixth Gas Exporting Countries Forum conference is being held in Doha against a backdrop of rising tensions between Russia and Western powers over Ukraine.

The forum, which has 11 members and seven additional countries with a watching brief, represents 71 percent of the world’s proven natural gas reserves, as well as 43 percent of its marketed production, 58 percent of LNG exports and 52 percent of pipeline trade across the globe.

Here are the updates from the conference:

  • Russia will continue to deliver uninterrupted natural gas supplies to world markets, President Vladimir Putin said in a letter to the conference. The comments came before Germany announced it would be halting the progress of the Nord Stream 2 gas line between the two countries.
  • Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi urged gas exporters to avoid any "cruel" sanctions such as those imposed by the US on Tehran, and his government said any revival of Iran's 2015 nuclear accord with world powers must lift such curbs.
  • Soaring gas prices in Europe started “way ahead of the issue in Ukraine” and are due to a lack of investment in the sector, Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs Saad Al-Kaabi said, adding: “Gas is definitely needed in the future.” He also said fossil fuels will need to be part of the solution in the transition toward renewables.
  • Iraq aims to shift its investment priority from the oil sector to gas for the first time in the country's history, oil minister Ihsan Abdul-Jabbar said. This would allow Iraq to increase its production of liquefied petroleum gas and distillates, Abdul-Jabbar added.
  • There is no need for OPEC+ to expand its oil production increases, Nigeria's petroleum minister said, as the group sees a potential deal between Iran and world powers unlocking more supplies. "We don't have do anything extraordinary this time because we are expecting a lot of production," Timipre Sylva said, according to Reuters. "We are expecting more production if a nuclear deal with Iran works out (since) there will be production from them," Sylva added.
  • He later said Nigeria is working hard to bring oil production levels higher by the end of 2022. According to Reuters, Sylva made the comments on the sidelines of the conference, saying: "We are working hard and we're expecting that by the end of this year we'll be able to bring back our production," Sylva said.
  • Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani said Qatar’s liquefied natural gas production capacity will rise to 126 million tons a year by 2027. He renewed calls for further dialogue among member countries of the gas forum, as well as gas importers and exporters to ensure the security of global gas supply.

Saudi healthcare group Mouwasat to add two more hospitals to its network

Saudi healthcare group Mouwasat to add two more hospitals to its network
Updated 13 sec ago

Saudi healthcare group Mouwasat to add two more hospitals to its network

Saudi healthcare group Mouwasat to add two more hospitals to its network

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Mouwasat Medical Services is set to add two more hospitals to its network to reach nine facilities, Managing Director Mohammed Al-Saleem told CNBC Arabia.

The two facilities will be added following the acquisition of Jeddah Doctors Co. and the opening of a new hospital in Yanbu.
The company also plans to establish a hospital in Riyadh, details of which will be revealed once all the formalities are completed, he added.

During the second quarter of 2022, the group’s net profit decreased 5.8 percent to SR141 million ($37.56 million), from SR150 million in the first quarter of 2022.

The official said the group witnessed pressure on profits in the first quarter, as a result of the expenses related to the operation of its new hospital in Madinah.

The Madinah hospital began operations on June 30, and is expected to generate revenue in the upcoming quarter, resulting in higher profits.

The group also recently acquired 100 percent of the Protocol Hospital in Egypt.


Saudi Arabia issues over 500 industrial licenses attracting $3.6bn investments in H1 

Saudi Arabia issues over 500 industrial licenses attracting $3.6bn investments in H1 
Updated 47 sec ago

Saudi Arabia issues over 500 industrial licenses attracting $3.6bn investments in H1 

Saudi Arabia issues over 500 industrial licenses attracting $3.6bn investments in H1 

RIYADH: The Saudi Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources saw an investment volume of SR13.7 billion ($3.6 billion) as it issued 501 new industrial licenses during the first six months of 2022. 

During the same period, 721 factories started production, attracting investments amounting to SR19.10 billion, the ministry’s monthly bulletin showed. 

This has brought the total volume of investments in the industrial sector until June to SR1.36 trillion, with a total of 10,675 factories. 

The bulletin further revealed that the industrial sector created over 26,000 jobs during the first six months of 2022.


Commodities Update — Gold slips; Soybeans down 2 percent; Base metals drop

Commodities Update — Gold slips; Soybeans down 2 percent; Base metals drop
Updated 32 min 48 sec ago

Commodities Update — Gold slips; Soybeans down 2 percent; Base metals drop

Commodities Update — Gold slips; Soybeans down 2 percent; Base metals drop

RIYADH: Gold prices slipped on Monday as the dollar rebounded, with expectations of sharp interest rate hikes from the Federal Reserve further pressuring bullion.

Spot gold was down 0.5 percent at $1,792.76 per ounce, as of 0540 GMT, after rising about 1.6 percent last week.

US gold futures fell 0.4 percent to $1,808.20.

Silver drops

Spot silver dropped 1.2 percent to $20.57 per ounce, while platinum fell 1.2 percent to $950.62. 

Palladium slipped 0.8 percent to $2,203.98.

Grains down

Chicago soybeans slid more than 2 percent on Monday, falling for the first time in three sessions after a US government report raised the country’s production forecast, with additional pressure from expectations of improved weather this week.

Corn and wheat lost more than 1 percent each.

The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board of Trade lost 2.1 percent to $14.24-1/2 a bushel, as of 0339 GMT.

Corn fell 1.4 percent to $6.33 a bushel, while wheat gave up 1.6 percent to $7.93-1/4 a bushel.

Industrial metals down

Prices of industrial metals fell on Monday after top consumer China reported several key economic data, which missed expectations by large margins, reinforcing fears of weakening demand from the world’s biggest metals market.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.7 percent at $8,033 a ton, as of 0412 GMT, while the most-traded September copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange dropped 1.3 percent to $9,160.34 a ton.

LME lead fell 1.8 percent to $2,145.50 a ton, tin declined 1.5 percent to $24,805 a ton, zinc decreased 1.4 percent to $3,539 a ton and aluminum eased 0.2 percent to $2,429 a ton.

(With input from Reuters)


Oil Updates — Crude down; China’s July refinery output drops to over 2-year low; Singapore marine fuel sales rebound

Oil Updates — Crude down; China’s July refinery output drops to over 2-year low; Singapore marine fuel sales rebound
Updated 15 August 2022

Oil Updates — Crude down; China’s July refinery output drops to over 2-year low; Singapore marine fuel sales rebound

Oil Updates — Crude down; China’s July refinery output drops to over 2-year low; Singapore marine fuel sales rebound

RIYADH: Oil prices fell on Monday as weak China economic data triggered concerns about demand at the world’s largest crude importer while the head of the world’s top exporter, Saudi Aramco, said it was ready to ramp up output. 

Brent crude futures were down 1.78 percent, to $96.37 a barrel at 11.10 a.m Saudi time.

US West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 1.74 percent, at $90.35. 

July refinery output in China drops to over 2-year low on plant outages

China’s refinery crude throughput fell last month to its lowest since March 2020 as several state refiners underwent unplanned shutdowns and their independent peers trimmed production in response to thinning margins.

Refiners processed 53.21 million tons of crude oil in July, 8.8 percent less than a year earlier, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics.

That is equivalent to 12.53 million barrels per day, the lowest daily rate since March 2020, and compared with 13.37 million bpd in June.

The weaker throughput in July extended a rare decline in China’s refinery processing seen in the first half of 2022 as strict COVID-19 lockdowns and fuel export controls curbed their production.

During the first seven months, refineries processed 380.27 million tons, down 6.3 percent from a year before and equal to about 13.09 million bpd.

Prolonged outages at large state-run refineries such as Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical Corp’s 320,000-bpd crude facility and PetroChina Wepec’s 200,000-bpd plant weighed on national production.

Sinopec did not resume refining at some of the units at the Shanghai plant until last week, while the northeast Liaoning-based Wepec was not expected to resume operation until late August after nearly three months’ shutdown, said an industry source.

Singapore marine fuel sales rebound to 7-month high in July

Marine fuel sales in Singapore, the largest bunkering hub in the world, rose by 10 percent month-on-month to a seven-month high of 4.12 million tons in July, the latest data from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore showed.

The uptick came amid a rise in vessel arrivals for bunkering, which climbed 8 percent month-on-month to 3,181 vessel calls in July. Bunker fuel prices were also lower in July versus June, amid softer upstream crude prices.

Sales for both low-sulfur fuel oil and high-sulfur fuel oil grades climbed from the previous month, the MPA data showed.

LSFO supplied to ships climbed by 7 percent month-on-month to 2.51 million tons in July, though the sales fell by 7 percent year-on-year.

Low-sulfur bunker fuel premiums were still elevated in the first half of July, at a time when cargo premiums rallied to record highs, before trending lower toward the end of the month.

Meanwhile, HSFO supplied to ships rose by 16 percent month-on-month to 1.27 million tons in July, and was 20 percent higher year on year.

(With input from Reuters)


TASI almost flat on higher inflation: Opening bell

TASI almost flat on higher inflation: Opening bell
Updated 15 August 2022

TASI almost flat on higher inflation: Opening bell

TASI almost flat on higher inflation: Opening bell

RIYADH: Saudi stocks started Monday’s session almost flat after the Saudi annual inflation rate increased to 2.7 percent in July, inciting uncertainty among investors.

TASI edged down 0.08 percent at 12,504, while the parallel market, Nomu, fell 0.16 percent at 22,005, as of 10:06 a.m. Saudi time.

Saudi Aramco shed 0.25 percent, despite achieving its highest quarterly profit since going public in 2019 with SR182 billion ($48.4 billion), a 90 percent jump over analysts' expectations.

Saudi Tadawul Group Holding Co. dropped 1.65 percent, following the announcement of a 23 percent decline in profits during the first half of the year to SR278 million.

Red Sea International Co. gained 4.96 percent to lead the gainers, after the real estate firm announced that its accumulated losses have been cut to zero, following a reduction in the company’s capital by SR298 million.

Saudi Printing and Packaging Co. climbed 2.45 percent, after the company narrowed its losses by 91.8 percent to SR2 million during the first half.

Basic Chemical Industries Co. lost 0.97 percent, despite achieving a 63 percent profit increase to SR46 million for the first half.

solutions by stc increased 0.43 percent, after its acquisition of Egypt’s Giza Systems has been approved by the Saudi competition authority.

Wafrah for Industry and Development Co. increased 1.86 percent, after the company swung to a profit of SR11 million during the first half of 2022.

Arabian Shield Cooperative Insurance Co. edged up 0.43 percent, despite a 30 percent profit decline to SR16 million for the first half.

The country's biggest lender Saudi National Bank declined 0.27 percent, while the Kingdom’s largest valued bank Al Rajhi fell 0.34 percent.