Green energy exports at heart of new deal with Saudi EXIM Bank and Korea Trade Insurance Corp

Green energy exports at heart of new deal with Saudi EXIM Bank and Korea Trade Insurance Corp
 As a part of the MoU, both nations will also engage in mutual information exchange on markets and projects (SPA)
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Updated 07 December 2022

Green energy exports at heart of new deal with Saudi EXIM Bank and Korea Trade Insurance Corp

Green energy exports at heart of new deal with Saudi EXIM Bank and Korea Trade Insurance Corp

 RIYADH: More green energy produced in Saudi Arabia will be exported to South Korea thanks to a new agreement signed between the two countries.

 The Saudi Export-Import Bank has signed a memorandum of understanding with Korea Trade Insurance Corp which will see eco-friendly fuels, including green hydrogen and green ammonia, traded with the Asian nation, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

 As a part of the MoU, both nations will also engage in mutual information exchange on markets and projects.

 According to the report, this deal will also help Saudi’s EXIM Bank to promote the development and diversification of exports to the Republic of Korea, along with providing export financing and guarantee services, securing export credit, and aiding the entry of Saudi products into the Korean market.

 Korea Trade Insurance Corp., also known as K-SURE, is the official export credit agency of the Republic of Korea.

 In October, Saad Al-Khalb, CEO of EXIM Bank, told Arab News that it provided SR20 billion ($5.3 billion) to support the Kingdom’s exports since its establishment in 2020.

 Al-Khalb also noted that the main mandate of EXIM is to support the economy and flow of goods, trades, infrastructure and long-term projects.

 He also added that EXIM Bank always tries to ensure that no Saudi cross-border export fails due to a lack of insurance or financing.

 In May, Saudi EXIM Bank launched its five-year strategic plan, from 2022 to 2026.

 The strategy seeks to close financing gaps and reduce export risks which will help facilitate Saudi non-oil exports to reach various global markets.


Saudi National Bank profits surge 46.7% in 2022 

Saudi National Bank profits surge 46.7% in 2022 
Updated 5 min 49 sec ago

Saudi National Bank profits surge 46.7% in 2022 

Saudi National Bank profits surge 46.7% in 2022 

RIYADH: The Saudi National Bank reported a 46.7 percent surge in annual profits in 2022 on the back of a rise in operating income.  

Annual net profits of SNB reached SR18.6 billion ($5 billion) at the end of last year compared to SR12.7 billion in 2021, according to a bourse statement.  

It indicated that the bank saw a 16.9 percent increase in operating profit in 2022 compared to the year before.  

Operating income yielded profit as a result of an 18.4 percent increase in net special commission income, and a 21.1 percent increase in money from banking service fees.  

Additionally, other operating expenses fell by 12.4 percent, and the total operating expenses – including credit losses – fell by 15.2 percent in 2022.  

This was driven by a 13.5 percent drop in other general and administrative expenses, as well as a 57.4 percent drop in the net provision for expected credit losses. 

In 2022, the SNB’s assets reached SR945 billion showing a 3.4 increase, revealed the bourse statement.  

The bank’s earnings per share amounted to SR4.06 last year compared to SR2.99 the year before.  

SNB’s net provision for expected credit losses plummeted by 57.45 percent – from SR3.96 billion in 2021 to SR1.69 billion in 2022.  


Factories in Saudi Arabia to increase by 50% in five years, says deputy minister at LEAP

Factories in Saudi Arabia to increase by 50% in five years, says deputy minister at LEAP
Updated 24 min 16 sec ago

Factories in Saudi Arabia to increase by 50% in five years, says deputy minister at LEAP

Factories in Saudi Arabia to increase by 50% in five years, says deputy minister at LEAP

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia plans to increase the number of factories by 50 percent in the next five years and pump SR1.4 trillion ($370 billion) into the industrial sector, said the deputy minister of industry and mineral resources.

Speaking at the launch of the Sanaei platform at the second edition of the LEAP technical conference in Riyadh, Osama Al-Zamil said the Kingdom ultimately wants to see the current number of such facilities rise from 10,500 at present to 36,000 by 2035. 

He also said the Sanaei platform aims to facilitate the adoption of best practices fomenting the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

“The level of reliance on skilled personnel will increase the competitiveness and operational efficiency of factories, present investment opportunities in the sector and provide incentives,” said the official added.

He stated that the “Future Factories Package” aims to transform 4,000 factories into operationally and technologically advanced facilities to raise digital maturity, operating efficiency and industrial capabilities, thereby promoting the development of exports, improving the work environment in factories, and providing attractive quality jobs by adopting the technologies of the 4IR.

The program focuses on two tracks. The first ensures new factories are designed and constructed according to high manufacturing and production efficiency standard, while the second transforms existing factories into facilities of operational excellence and advanced technologies.


Saudi crown prince chairs Council of Economic and Development Affairs meeting

Saudi crown prince chairs Council of Economic and Development Affairs meeting
Updated 15 sec ago

Saudi crown prince chairs Council of Economic and Development Affairs meeting

Saudi crown prince chairs Council of Economic and Development Affairs meeting

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman chaired a meeting of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs in Riyadh on Tuesday.

During the meeting held at Al-Yamamah Palace, the council reviewed a number of economic and development matters including a presentation by the Ministry of Economy and Planning regarding local and global economic developments.

The presentation included details of the most important indicators related to the national economy, especially the growth witnessed by sectors of the national economy.

It also looked at the prospects of the global economy during the coming period and an analysis of the most prominent indicators.

The council also discussed a proposal submitted by its strategic management office regarding the governance of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and the roles of supporting agencies.

It also reviewed a periodic presentation submitted by the Ministry of Health on the latest health developments related to the coronavirus pandemic, and another submitted by the project management office of the council’s secretariat regarding decisions and recommendations during the last quarter of 2022.


‘Clean’ energy technologies are not absolutely clean, says top expert at IAEE conference

‘Clean’ energy technologies are not absolutely clean, says top expert at IAEE conference
Updated 17 min 42 sec ago

‘Clean’ energy technologies are not absolutely clean, says top expert at IAEE conference

‘Clean’ energy technologies are not absolutely clean, says top expert at IAEE conference

RIYADH: Clean energy technologies which include solar and wind power are not completely clean as there could be lifecycle emissions associated with these power generation methods, according to Shihab Elborai, partner at consulting business Strategy& Middle East.

In an exclusive interview with Arab News on the sidelines of the 44th conference of the International Association for Energy Economics, Elborai said that fossil fuels are required to develop solar panels, wind turbines, batteries, transformers and cables for the grid, which may create a spike in carbon emissions if clean energy technologies are being rolled out at an exponential speed all across the globe.

“There are lifecycle emissions associated with clean energy technology. So, clean energy technologies are not really absolutely clean. There are 50 grams of carbon dioxide equivalent per kilowatt produced from solar panels. Around 10 grams of CO2 per kilowatt hour are produced from wind turbines,” said Elborai.

He added: “If these (clean energy) technologies are deployed at an exponential rate without an equivalently rapid clean up of the supply chain, then we can end up with a situation where, in the short term, we have a spike of CO2 emissions, even though we are reducing emissions in the long term.”

According to Elborai, a large amount of carbon dioxide released while deploying clean energy technologies at a high pace will remain in the atmosphere, which will negatively impact the sustainable journey.

“Everybody understands the repercussions of acting too slow in the energy transition. There are impacts of also acting too fast,” he noted.

He added that the right rate of deployment is necessary for a smooth energy transition, void of unintended climate consequences.

During the talk, Elborai noted that technology has a huge role to play to reduce the carbon footprint in the supply chain.

Elborai further pointed out that the exact time required for energy transition cannot be determined, as the timeframe is dependent on several factors.

“I think this (time for energy transition) is something that needs to be studied and modeled. It is something that depends on the progress that is being made in developing technologies and in the deployment of carbon capture. It will change with time as these technologies evolve as well. So it’s something that needs to be constantly monitored and adjusted. It’s not a simple answer,” he said.

He also emphasized the role of recycling critical minerals to reduce emissions in the mining sector.

“There is also a role that recycling can play. If we are using materials that have already been mined, and we are closing the cycle at the end of life, then that can have a role to mitigate the impact. But really, the key measure that needs to be taken is to carefully think about the deployment of renewable technologies. Not too fast, not too slow, just right,” he added.

Elborai went on to say that carbon capture technology has a crucial role in accelerating energy transition in a sustainable manner.

“Using carbon capture as a means of removal or closing the cycle on the carbon is one of the very important measures for managing the spike in emissions during the transition,” added Elborai.

According to Elborai, Saudi Arabia has an advantaged position in both renewables and traditional sources of energy, as the world sails toward sustainability.

“The Kingdom is in a very advantaged position, as Saudi Arabia has a strong advantage in producing conventional (energy). It will be the last standing player or supplier of gas and oil. The Kingdom also has a huge advantage when it comes to solar, wind, and renewable resources,” said Elborai.

He added: “So, at every point in that transition, the Kingdom can actually produce the product that meets the requirements of the end users of energy globally. The Kingdom is definitely a winner when it comes to the energy transition.”


Ericsson and Mobily deploy AI-based solutions to enhance network performance in Kingdom 

Ericsson and Mobily deploy AI-based solutions to enhance network performance in Kingdom 
Updated 07 February 2023

Ericsson and Mobily deploy AI-based solutions to enhance network performance in Kingdom 

Ericsson and Mobily deploy AI-based solutions to enhance network performance in Kingdom 

RIYADH: Saudi telecom operator Mobily has deployed a new artificial intelligence-based technology with Swedish firm Ericsson to enhance network performance across the Kingdom.   

The ‘Ericsson AI-based network solution’ is expected to enhance end-user experience by providing 5G network diagnostics and root cause analysis, according to a press release. 

The announcement about the new technology, which will help cater to the needs of the growing number of mobile phone users, was made during the LEAP 23 international technology conference in Riyadh.  

“Ericsson’s artificial intelligence-based solution enables our customers to enjoy superior and uninterrupted 5G connectivity to stay connected with loved ones or to document key moments anytime, anywhere,” said Mobily Chief Technology Officer, Alaa Malki. 

The network diagnostics capabilities within the software suite are expected to provide ‘proactive network optimization’, allowing the operator to identify and resolve network anomalies, along with providing reliable connectivity, the press release noted.  

Ekow Nelson, vice president at Ericsson Middle East and Africa, said: “Our success relied on Ericsson’s artificial intelligence-based network solution built with machine learning models that learn from the live network using the multiple sources of data to deliver near real-time improvements, thus avoiding interruptions during critical and peak times.”  

Both companies also announced the launch of Mobily Pay, a mobile financial service, during the ongoing LEAP 23 international technology conference. The new solution will allow all the users in the Kingdom to conduct personalized financial transactions like contactless payments, money transfers, international remittances, digital card payments, cash-back, bill payments, and mobile top-ups.