Thu. Jun 8th, 2023
RIYADH: UAE-based conglomerate Al Habtoor Group will build three mega residential projects worth an estimated 9.5 billion dirhams ($2.58 billion) across Dubai in 2023, according to a statement.
“The strong economic recovery in Dubai in 2022 and the high development levels that have reached new heights not even witnessed before the COVID-19 crisis, were encouraging factors to be involved again in the real estate sector and increase investments in new quality projects,” the statement said, citing founding Chairman Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor.
Located in Al Habtoor City, the first project is set to entail a number of residential towers, one of which is set to be the largest worldwide in terms of size and number of apartments.
Serving the hospitality and entertainment sectors, the complex aims to cater to all lifestyles. The construction costs for this complex have amounted to 4.5 billion dirhams.
The second project – worth an accumulated 2.5 billion dirhams – poses a unique residential development that will be located in Habtoor Grand Resort in Jumeirah Beach Residence.
Meanwhile, the third project will work on revamping the Habtoor Tower in Marina at a cost amounting to 2.5 billion dirhams.
Under the third project, the current Habtoor Tower will be replaced by an ultra-luxurious residential tower in the heart of the Dubai Marina with extraordinary views.
“The expanded portfolio will be financed internally. AHG considers that these expansion projects are a necessity and a clear reflection of the Nation’s Leadership and vision resulting in a growth of the UAE economy at an unmatched pace by any other country,” according to the statement from AHG.
In September, company CEO Mohammed Al-Habtoor said that AHG is set to list on the Dubai Financial Market within two years, depending on market conditions.
The group’s allocations amount to approximately 3 billion dirhams, and approximately $3.5 billion are invested in Habtoor City, which is a Dubai mixed-use development with three hotels. 
AHG was founded as an engineering company in the UAE in the 1970s, and today it operates in hospitality, automotive, real estate, education, and publishing.
LONDON: Asian spot liquefied natural gas prices fell for the fourth week in a row on mild weather and ample inventories, with further downward pressure expected due to the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday.
The average LNG price for February delivery into northeast Asia was $23 per million British thermal units, down $2, or 8 percent, from the previous week, industry sources estimated.
The average price for March delivery is estimated at $20.60 per mmBtu.
“Prices continue to soften with demand still relatively low. At current levels there has been some spot activity but the upcoming Asian holidays will apply downward pressure,” said Toby Copson, global head of trading and advisory at Trident LNG.
“(At) sub-$20, I see some optionality given freight is low compared to recent highs, so this makes for favorable conditions for FOB buyers looking to arbitration into Asia as it is holding a premium,” he said.
In Europe, the start of the year has seen a decline in gas and LNG prices, partly due to a continuation of unseasonably mild weather across the continent, putting less stress on gas inventory levels and sending the benchmark gas price at the Dutch TTF hub down 14 percent since the end of 2022.
“Unless we see a late winter cold snap, the market is expecting storage levels to remain healthy as we come out of winter, which should in turn limit panic around the summer restocking season,” according to Tobias Davis, head of LNG Asia at brokerage firm Tullett Prebon.
S&P Global Commodity Insights (SPGCI) assessed its daily Northwest Europe LNG Marker price benchmark, for cargoes delivered in February on ex-ship basis, at $19.241/mmBtu on Jan. 12, a discount of $2.2/mmBtu to the February gas price at the Dutch gas TTF hub, according to Ciran Roe, global director of LNG.
“March JKM and April JKM derivatives on Jan. 12 are a minus $0.60-2/mmBtu discount to the TTF months. This has eased pressure on the European LNG differentials and means Europe isn’t being outbid for LNG at the moment,” Roe said.
BERLIN: Germany is in talks with Iraq over the possibility of importing natural gas from the oil-rich country, Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Friday, as Berlin scrambles to diversify its energy sources to replace a drop in Russian fossil fuel shipments.
“We also talked about possible gas deliveries to Germany and agreed to stay in close contact,” Scholz told journalists in a joint news conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al-Sudani in Berlin.
Scholz did not give further details on the volumes of gas Germany hopes to import from Iraq.
Baghdad has offered opportunities to German companies to invest in using Iraq’s natural gas and the gas generated as a byproduct from oil production, Al-Sudani said, adding that Iraq wants to deliver gas through a pipeline via Turkiye to Europe.
Iraq continues to flare some of the gas extracted alongside crude oil because it lacks the facilities to process it into fuel for local consumption or exports.
RIYADH:  Finland’s “cutting-edge” mining technology can help Saudi Arabia achieve its excavation goals, a minister from the European nation told Arab News as she praised the opportunties available to foreign companies in the Kingdom.
Speaking on the sidelines of the Future Minerals Forum in Riyadh, Nina Vaskunlahti – Finland’s deputy minister for international trade – revealed she had met with the Gulf’s largest mining firm Ma’aden to discuss opportunities for closer working.
The meeting with the Saudi-based firm is one of a number of examples of the growing relationship between the two countries, following a visit from a 40-strong delegation from the Kingdom to Finland at the end of 2022, led by Minister of Commerce Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi.
“Finland has cutting-edge technologies in mining equipment, in machinery, in digitalization, in circular economy solutions,” said Vaskunlahti, adding that her country has “new technologies, new ideas that we think would fit the Saudi needs as far as the Vision 2030 is concerned.”
She highlighted a number of Finnish businesses already working in the Kingdom’s mining sector, including a firm with the technology to clean municipality wastewater so it can be reused in mining processes.
When asked about the number of memorandums of understanding signed between firms from the two countries, the deputy minister said: “This week, for instance, I can think of at least maybe around five or six, which is not too bad.
“The Finnish Geological Survey – they have five projects going on here already. Yesterday (Wednesday) we met with Ma’aden and we were discussing new opportunities. So our survey people will get in touch with Ma’aden relevant contacts over there and look what possibly can be done.”
When asked how much more the relationship can develop, Vaskunlahti replied: “Well, of course, for me it’s difficult to say how many more companies will be coming here. 
“It also very much depends on the companies’ own decisions. It depends on the investment climate and the opportunities that Saudi Arabia can offer. 
“What I have seen and witnessed in four days is that there are plenty of opportunities for Finnish companies and there are companies that have been operating here for the last 20, 30, 40 years.” 
Vaskunlahti was keen to stress the changes she was seeing in the Kingdom, and said: “I am impressed at the speed that the country is changing. 
“I am impressed by how many impressive women I have met and how their number in the workforce has increased and how influential they are and how they are pushing things forward.”
The second edition of the Future Minerals Forum began on Jan. 10 with a ministerial roundtable, followed by two days of meetings and addresses involving more than 200 speakers from around the world.
The forum came as Saudi Arabia was deemed to be on track to become a “global leader” in the mining industry thanks to the Kingdom’s “welcoming investment climate” according to a report from The Payne Institute for Public Policy at the Colorado School for Mines in the US, issued in December.
RIYADH: Angola is ready to work with Saudi Arabia in the field of mining as the African country looks to excavate minerals including copper, nickel and lithium, according to its ambassador.
Speaking to Arab News on the sidelines of the Future Minerals Forum in Riyadh, Frederico Manuel dos Santos e Silva Cardoso talked up the relationship between his country and the Kingdom, saying investment could flow between the two nations.
As well as the mining sector, he also flagged up infrastructure developments as a possible area of cooperation.
His comments came just days after the Federation of Saudi Chambers and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Angola signed a Memorandum of Understanding to boost economic ties between the countries. 
The MoU includes plans for delegation visits, and exchanging information on markets and investment opportunities.
“Angola is also engaged in diversifying the economy,” said Cardoso, referencing Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 drive to move the Kingdom’s economy away from oil.
“We can work in several fields on mining. For example, Angola has copper, cobalt, nickel, lithium, diamonds, and also has ornamental rocks that could be areas that we could work (on) together,” he added.
On infrastructure work, the ambassador said: “We have opportunities for projects of PPP – Public-private partnership.
“This is one of the areas that we are working on in order to put both countries working together.”
Relations between Angola and Saudi Arabia have strengthened in recent years, with the Southern African country opening an embassy in Riyadh in 2021.
Bilateral relations between the Kingdom and Angola began in 2007 and were reinforced in 2019 with the visit of a high-level delegation from Saudi Arabia to the Southern African nation.
Referring to the recent MoU,  Cardoso said it was “the first step” to helping strengthen relations between private businesses in the two countries.
“This MoU will establish the main lines for the cooperation between both sides and is going to be a way to make Angola better known in Saudi Arabia, and to make Saudi Arabia known by the Angolan businessmen. I think that this is an opportunity to put Angolan and Saudi businessmen working together directly in order to find opportunities in both countries,” he added.
Looking ahead, the ambassador said Angola and the Kingdom could look to find ways of “promoting and protecting the investment that could be done by each country”.
“We are ready to negotiate, case by case, the opportunities of investments in Angola,” Cardoso explained.
“We have to work on the framework of legal MoUs or legal contracts because we have to establish a basic platform in which both countries will work. For example, we are working in order to establish a legal agreement to avoid double taxation,” he said.
NEW DELHI: India has set green hydrogen consumption targets for some industries, so as to generate demand for cleaner fuel in its quest to reach net zero by 2070, the government said on Friday, as it unveiled its policy for green energy, Reuters reported.
One of the world’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases, India approved a plan of incentives worth more than $2 billion last week to develop a green hydrogen production capacity of 5 million tons a year by 2030.
Asia’s third-largest economy wants to use green hydrogen to replace grey hydrogen, produced using gas, as it moves to decarbonize sectors such as oil and fertilizers.
Green hydrogen is a zero-carbon fuel made by electrolysis, using renewable power from wind and solar to split water into hydrogen and oxygen.
India’s top refiner Indian Oil Corp, top power utility NTPC Ltd. and conglomerates including Reliance and Adani group have announced plans to build green hydrogen projects.
To gradually build a hydrogen-powered shipping lines, India has set a goal for its largest fleet operator, the state-run Shipping Corp. of India, to retrofit at least two ships to run on green hydrogen-based fuels by 2027.
All the state-run oil and gas companies that charter 40 vessels for fuel transport will also have to hire at least one ship powered by green hydrogen each year from 2027 to 2030.
“Green ammonia bunkers and refueling facilities will be set up at least at one port by 2025,” the government said in its policy document.
“Such facilities will be established at all major ports by 2035.”
India aims to end imports of ammonia-based fertilizer by 2034 to 2035, replacing them with locally produced green ammonia-based soil nutrients.
The government will also invite bids to set up two domestic green hydrogen-based urea and diammonium phosphate plants.
The policy also requires new steel plants to be capable of operating on green hydrogen.


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