External geopolitical factors pose challenges to stability and security of oil supply

Minister of Energy and Infrastructure highlights ways to maintain stable global energy market at Adipec 2023


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Suhail al-Mazrouei talks at Adipec. — AP
Suhail al-Mazrouei talks at Adipec. — AP

Published: Tue 3 Oct 2023, 7:06 PM

External geopolitical factors pose challenges to stability and security of supply, putting greater pressure on Opec and Opec+ countries that control 80.4 per cent of the world’s proven oil reserves, Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, said on Tuesday.

The minister was speaking at the Energy Talk, as part of Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (Adipec) 2023. The session addressed the role of Opec and Opec+ countries in securing energy supply to maintain the market’s future stability.

Al Mazrouei emphasised that the global energy landscape is constantly evolving. The Minister said: “We believe it is crucial to address eminent challenges and understand the dynamics of the energy market to ensure a stable and sustainable future for the industry. New investments in the sector are much needed to maintain the demand-supply balance at all times.”

He noted that according to an Opec report, in 2022, global oil trade for crude and products was estimated at 53.3 million barrels per day (bpd), slightly higher compared to 2021, but still slightly lower than pre-pandemic volumes of around 56 m bpd.

Al Mazrouei added: “The UAE is heavily investing in various sources of energy, including renewables, to diversify its energy mix and ensure long-term sustainability. As part of our Energy Strategy 2050, we will invest up to $54.5 billion by 2030 to meet the country’s increasing demand for energy.”

The UAE has been a key player in balancing global energy markets through its commitment to responsible production and export policies. As a reliable supplier, the UAE has consistently met its contractual obligations and contributed to market stability. The country’s local and international strategic storage facilities further enhance its role in ensuring uninterrupted energy supply during times of disruptions.

“The UAE has developed ambitious plans to diversify its energy sources, promote energy efficiency, and embrace emerging energy technologies. We recently updated the UAE Energy Strategy 2050 and launched the National Hydrogen Strategy to reflect higher climate ambition and commitment to net zero. Furthermore, the UAE has high ambitions for the gas sector. This includes investments in natural gas exploration, production, and infrastructure development to meet the increasing demand and contribute to a greener future.”

Notably, the UAE is developing the Ghasha mega-project, the world’s largest offshore sour gas project, that will play a vital role in meeting the UAE’s goal of gas self-sufficiency by 2030 and the rising demand for liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports. It is expected to produce more than 1.5 billion standard cubic feet of natural gas per day. The Minister emphasised that maintaining a stable global energy market requires collaboration, foresight, and proactive measures.

He said: “At the 28th UN Climate Change Conference (COP28) that the UAE will host later this year, the energy transition will be front and centre. We will ensure it is an action-oriented COP that drives progress on and accelerates the global energy transition.”

Under the theme ‘Decarbonising. Faster. Together.’ Adipec 2023 is taking place from October 2 to 5 at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. It aims to unite the industry to accelerate urgent, collective, and responsible action to decarbonise quicker and future-proof energy systems.

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