NRG matters — US to invest $2.5bn in carbon capture; Toyota allocates $624m in making EV parts in India

NRG matters — US to invest $2.5bn in carbon capture; Toyota allocates $624m in making EV parts in India
The Iran nuclear deal is set to be discussed (Shutterstock)
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Updated 09 May 2022

NRG matters — US to invest $2.5bn in carbon capture; Toyota allocates $624m in making EV parts in India

NRG matters — US to invest $2.5bn in carbon capture; Toyota allocates $624m in making EV parts in India

RIYADH: Qatar is making an attempt to push the merits of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, while the US is investing in carbon removal technology to help it achieve zero emissions.

Meanwhile, Russia’s Gazprom confirms stable natural gas supply to Europe, and Japan’s Toyota is allocating a significant budget to produce electric vehicle parts in India, in line with its carbon neutrality goals.

Looking at the bigger picture: 

  • Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani is set to visit Iran, Germany, Britain, along other European countries, in an attempt to propel the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and discuss energy security in Europe, Reuters reported. 
  • The US Department of Energy has announced plans to invest up to $2.5 billion on carbon capture technology. This comes as investment in such technology will help address carbon emission, CNBC reported, citing energy secretary Jennifer Granholm.

Through a micro lens: 

  • Russian majority state-owned multinational energy corporation Gazprom has announced that natural gas supplies to Europe through Ukraine still prevail as a result of persistent consumer demand, Reuters reported. This comes as requests stood at 92.1 million cubic meters and 92.4 million cubic meters on May 8th and May 7threspectively.
  • Japanese multinational automotive manufacturer Toyota has announced that it will allocate as much as 48 billion rupees ($624 million) to produce electric vehicle parts in India, Bloomberg reported. The move is in line with the car maker’s goal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; Genesis hires an insider as interim chief

Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; Genesis hires an insider as interim chief
Updated 10 sec ago

Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; Genesis hires an insider as interim chief

Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; Genesis hires an insider as interim chief

DUBAI: Bitcoin, the leading cryptocurrency internationally, traded lower on Thursday, falling by 4.03 percent to $23,371 as of 9:37 a.m. Riyadh time.

Ethereum, the second most traded cryptocurrency, was priced at $1,843 falling by 5.33 percent, according to data from Coindesk.

Genesis hires an insider as interim chief and cuts 20 percent of staff

In a statement released on Wednesday, Genesis Trading said its headcount had been reduced by 20 percent and that Chief Operating Officer Derar Islim was appointed interim head of the crypto broker, Reuters reported.

Islim will now replace Michael Moro as CEO.

In recent months, a number of high profile firms have been forced to reduce their workforces due to the so-called “crypto winter.”

According to a Genesis spokesperson, 260 people were employed before the layoffs.

One more victim of the declining interest in digital assets is Genesis Inc., which disclosed exposure to Three Arrows Capital last month.

However, Genesis parent Digital Currency Group took on some of Three Arrows’ liabilities after the crypto broker failed to meet a margin call, outgoing CEO Moro said.

As a senior adviser, Genesis has also hired Tom Conheeney, the former president of SAC Capital and its successor, Point72 Asset Management.

Genesis said it had started searching for a full-time chief executive to guide it through the transition. Moro will advise the company throughout the transition.

Crypto.com gets UK regulatory approval

Crypto.com, a Singapore-based cryptocurrency platform, has registered with Britain’s financial services regulator, Reuters reported.

Crypto.com has been approved to offer crypto asset products and services to customers in the UK in compliance with anti-money laundering and terrorist financing legislation.

“The UK is a strategically important market for us,” said Crypto.com CEO Kris Marszalek, citing the country’s growing crypto adoption and efforts to make it a hub for crypto assets.

Crypto firms are racing to register with financial watchdogs as authorities around the world grapple with how to regulate the sector.

The UK does not regulate cryptocurrencies, and consumers who lose their digital assets are not compensated.

Crypto companies have previously faced backlash after the FCA denied their registration applications.

When it comes to crypto, the watchdog will always be “hawkish” about consumer protection.

With inputs from Reuters

 

 


China In-Focus — Asian giant opposes trade talks between US and Taiwan; Stocks fall; Aluminum imports fall

China In-Focus — Asian giant opposes trade talks between US and Taiwan; Stocks fall; Aluminum imports fall
Updated 5 min 19 sec ago

China In-Focus — Asian giant opposes trade talks between US and Taiwan; Stocks fall; Aluminum imports fall

China In-Focus — Asian giant opposes trade talks between US and Taiwan; Stocks fall; Aluminum imports fall

RIYADH: China firmly opposes trade talks between the US and Taiwan, and says it will take all necessary measures to firmly safeguard its sovereignty, security and development interests, the commerce ministry said on Thursday.

Taiwan and the US have said they will start trade talks under a new initiative.
“One China” policy is a prerequisite for Taiwan’s participation in economic cooperation with foreign countries, Shu Jueting, spokeswoman of the ministry, said at a regular press conference.

Stocks down

China and Hong Kong stocks fell on Thursday, hit by increasingly grim growth prospects for the world’s second-largest economy suffering from COVID-19 outbreaks, a property crisis, a record heat wave and limited room for monetary easing.
China’s blue-chip CSI300 Index dropped 0.9 percent, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.5 percent. 

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng benchmark fell 0.6 percent.

China’s July aluminum imports fall 38%
China’s aluminum imports in July slid 38.3 percent from a year earlier, government data showed on Thursday, as domestic production rose to a record and overseas supplies tightened.
The country brought in 192,581 tons of unwrought aluminum and products, including primary metal and unwrought, alloyed aluminum, last month, according to data from the General Administration of Customs.
The fall in imports was partly attributed to a rise in domestic supply this year.
China, the world’s biggest metals producer and consumer, made a record 3.43 million tons of aluminum in July as smelters did not have to contend with the power restrictions imposed last year.
Total imports in the first seven months were 1.27 million tons, down 28.1 percent from the same period a year ago.
Imports of bauxite, the main source of aluminum ore, were at 10.59 million tons last month, up 12.4 percent from June’s 9.42 million, and compared with 9.25 million in July a year earlier, according to the data.

Geely Automobile H1 profit slumps 35%
China’s Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd said on Thursday its first-half net profit fell 35 percent, as the country’s strict COVID-19 restrictions dented sales and disrupted production.
Hangzhou-based Geely, China’s highest-profile automaker globally due to the group’s investments in Volvo Cars and Mercedes-Benz, posted January-June profit of 1.55 billion yuan ($228.3 million), versus 2.38 billion yuan in the same period a year earlier.
China’s auto sector has been hit hard by government efforts to combat COVID-19, with many areas including the commercial hub of Shanghai under lockdowns of varying lengths.

 

(With input from Reuters) 

 


India In-Focus — Macro stability outlook improving; Rupee falls

India In-Focus — Macro stability outlook improving; Rupee falls
Updated 7 min 55 sec ago

India In-Focus — Macro stability outlook improving; Rupee falls

India In-Focus — Macro stability outlook improving; Rupee falls

RIYADH: India’s worst period of macro instability is possibly over, and both consumer inflation and trade deficit are expected to moderate albeit gradually, Morgan Stanley said.

“Global commodity prices were largely steady last month, with the exception of oil prices which continued to decline,” Upasana Chachra, chief India economist at Morgan Stanley, said in the note on Wednesday.

“We believe the worst of macro instability is behind us now, though moderation in inflation and narrowing of India’s trade deficit will be gradual.”

The note pointed out that the indexes measuring global commodity prices, food prices and metal prices had stabilized in August and were down 9 percent, 25 percent from their peak. Oil prices, meanwhile, had declined 8 percent month-on-month.

Chachra reckons India’s consumer inflation rate will rise to between 7 percent and 7.2 percent in August and remain at 7 percent in September, before moderating gradually. 

The inflation rate has remained above the Reserve Bank of India’s tolerance band for seven straight months.

The research house reckons India’s trade deficit likely peaked at $30 billion in July. The record trade deficit has prompted economists to revise India’s current account deficit and balance of payments projections.

“We believe that lower commodity prices and a partial rollback of taxes on petroleum products will help improve the trade balance trend,” Chachra said.

Indian rupee falls

The Indian rupee was trading lower against the dollar on Thursday, tracking a Chinese yuan-led decline in Asian currencies.

The rupee was trading at 79.6575 per US dollar by 0524 GMT, down from 79.4450 in the previous session. The local currency opened at 79.60.

India may delay coal plant closures

The Indian government is eyeing to delay the closure of coal plants and is even planning to open more, a move that will potentially stall efforts to hit climate goals, according to a Bloomberg report. 

According to the report, Indian authorities are considering a proposal to shutter less than 5 GW of existing capacity by the end of the decade as the country is facing rising demand for electricity amid a global shortage. In 2020, India decided to shutter about 25 GW by 2030. 

 

(With input from Reuters) 


UAE In -- Focus: AD Ports profit witness 59 percent rise in Q2; UAE tops 11 indexes as best destination for expats

UAE In -- Focus: AD Ports profit witness 59 percent rise in Q2; UAE tops 11 indexes as best destination for expats
Updated 12 min 3 sec ago

UAE In -- Focus: AD Ports profit witness 59 percent rise in Q2; UAE tops 11 indexes as best destination for expats

UAE In -- Focus: AD Ports profit witness 59 percent rise in Q2; UAE tops 11 indexes as best destination for expats

DUBAI: In the second quarter of this year, Abu Dhabi’s AD Ports Group reported a profit of 300.6 million dirhams ($81.68 million), an increase of 59 percent over the same period last year, but a decrease of about 2 percent over the first quarter, according to MEED.
For the second quarter, revenues grew by 25 percent to 1.2 billion dirhams, primarily driven by the Maritime and Economic Cities & Free Zones clusters, and to a lesser extent by the Digital Cluster, MEED added.
As compared with the first quarter, revenue increased by close to 19 percent. For the second quarter of this year, adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization increased by 41 percent.

Company officials reported an improvement of 200 basis points in adjusted Ebitda margin for the period, reaching 42.8 percent.
“AD Ports Group maintains a robust capital structure with adequate liquidity and investment-grade credit ratings to cater to its future growth,” the firm said.

UAE tops 11 indexes as best destination for expats
On 11 indexes of the best expat destinations, the UAE has outperformed the international average in terms of language, bureaucracy, professional prospects, leisure opportunities, travel, transport, job satisfaction, safety, health care, digital life, housing, wages, and job safety, according to InterNations, Emirates News Agency WAM reported.
Out of five pillars and 17 indexes, the UAE scored highly in four key pillars and 11 key indices, according to a German research firm, WAM added.
A number of factors were considered in the report, including the quality of life, ease of settling in, working abroad, personal finances, and the availability of basic necessities.
It was revealed that 94 percent of UAE residents felt safe, compared to 81 percent worldwide, and 86 percent of those surveyed were satisfied with government services, exceeding the worldwide average by 25 points.
Additionally, 90 percent of respondents said they could make cashless payments, while only 84 percent of respondents worldwide said they could.
Healthcare access in the UAE is easy for 78 percent of residents, compared to 64 percent worldwide in the health care sector, WAM said.

79 percent of respondents said living in the UAE improved their career prospects, compared to 65 percent of respondents worldwide.
While the global percentage of people who do not speak the local language is 51 percent, 85 percent of UAE residents said it wasn’t a barrier, and 83 percent of UAE residents said administrative procedures are easy and simple, outperforming the global rate of 56 percent by 27 points.
There is a 75 percent positive response to finding housing, compared to a 54 percent negative response worldwide.
The UAE is the world’s leading country in this regard, according to 83 percent of those who were surveyed, WAM concluded.
 
Emaar board to discuss Namshi sale on August 18
The board of directors of Emaar Properties will discuss the sale of Namshi, its e-commerce unit, on August 18, MEED reported.


ACWA Power’s $2.4bn wind project in Uzbekistan to be operational by 2026: Chairman

ACWA Power’s $2.4bn wind project in Uzbekistan to be operational by 2026: Chairman
Updated 12 min 10 sec ago

ACWA Power’s $2.4bn wind project in Uzbekistan to be operational by 2026: Chairman

ACWA Power’s $2.4bn wind project in Uzbekistan to be operational by 2026: Chairman

JEDDAH: Saudi ACWA Power’s $2.4 billion wind project in Uzbekistan will be operational by 2026, as the construction is expected to start next year, said a top official.

In an exclusive interaction with Arab News on the sidelines of the fourth meeting of the Saudi-Uzbekistan Business Council in Jeddah, Mohammad Abunayyan, chairman of the board of directors at ACWA Power, revealed that the 1.5GW Karakalpakstan wind project, located in north-western Uzbekistan, would be one of the biggest single-site onshore wind projects in Central Asia and the world.

“This is the biggest project in the world, where it is one phase, one location. And this is really a huge milestone and huge achievement for ACWA Power,” he said.

Abunayyan revealed that the firm signed total deals worth $5 billion with Uzbekistan, including the $2.4 billion wind project.

The wind project is expected to achieve a financial close by the end of 2023 and be fully commissioned by the first quarter of 2026. Upon completion, the facility is expected to power 1.65 million households and offset 2.4 million tons of carbon emissions per year.

This is ACWA Power’s fifth project in Uzbekistan as its portfolio also includes three wind farms and a combined cycle gas turbine project.

During the Saudi-Uzbekistan business council, ACWA Power also signed an investment cooperation agreement valued at $10 billion to explore gas, renewable energy, and green hydrogen project developments over the next five years in the Republic.

ACWA Power also signed a new collaboration agreement with the Uzbekistan Ministry of Energy and Air Products to focus on future investments in the green hydrogen sector.

The chairman revealed that ACWA Power’s green hydrogen project in New York is progressing steadily.

“It (green hydrogen project in New York) is going great. It is going really well. This is really due to the visionary leader, the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is leading the new future, not only in energy but also in several other sectors,” said Abunayyan.

He further noted that Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman is leading the energy transition implementation in the Kingdom.

“He is extremely vital, important and relevant to all what ACWA does outside Saudi Arabia. He is supporting all these initiatives, all these projects,” Abunayyan added.