Kuwait supports international efforts aimed at restoring balance and stability to the global oil market in a manner that serves common interests of crude exporting and importing countries, a senior official has affirmed.
It devotes great concern to petroleum industries, in general, and downstream sector in particular, said the Kuwait Oil Ministry Acting Undersecretary, Sheikh Talal Nasser Al-Adhabi Al-Sabah, addressing a conference, themed ‘Performance Improvement of Petroleum Downstream Industry’ that kicked off today.
He was speaking on behalf of Minister of Oil, Electricity and Water Dr. Khaled Al-Fadhel. Currently, Kuwait is executing a number of strategic enterprises, namely the environmentally friendly crude complex and Al-Zor refinery, Sheikh Talal said at the convention, organized by the Organization of Arab Exporting Countries (OAPEC), in coordination with Japan Cooperation Centre Petroleum (JCCP).
The efforts designed to stabilize the market, along with sincere adherence on part of oil producing countries in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), have led to noticeable improvement in the international crude market, he continues. This congress is being held amid rapid developments in the global oil market. As for the State of Kuwait, it played a positive role, over the past two years, with respect of cutting the crude output by OPEC and non-OPEC countries, in line with the key accord, worked out in end of 2016, when the stakeholders agreed to cut the production by 1.8 million barrels per day.
Turning to the vital environmentally friendly fuel and refinery projects, Sheikh Talal dubbed them “the third renaissance in the refining industry in the State of Kuwait,” following the major ones in the 60s and 80s of the past century. Elaborating, he has affirmed the state approach to harness natural gas at power stations, as well as in the renewable energy sector, noting that the first phase of Al-Shagaya complex was recently inaugurated. This venture is projected to put out 70 megawatts, including 10 MW from solar panels, 10 MW from wind turbines and 50 MW from thermal solar energy.
Al-Shagaya venture has been launched in line with the Vision of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah to secure 15 percent of the country’s energy needs from renewable and clean sources by 2030, he said. For his part, Abbas Al-Naqi, OAPEC’s Secretary-General, has addressed the conference, saying that the congress is held at a time when the petroleum industry is facing various challenges and hurdles, on top of which volatility of crude oil prices globally, in spite of their relative stability around fixed rates, in addition to increasing burdens resulting from meeting international environmental legislations, and other factors that affect the global petroleum markets.
In order to face these challenges, OAPEC member countries have been working on developing the petroleum industry in general, with a particular focus on refining and petrochemicals. This is done through developing existing facilities in these countries and building new ones equipped with the latest technologies to contribute to the development of the industry and boost its competitiveness so that they become one of the most important hubs for exporting high-quality petroleum and petrochemical products to international markets.
Simultaneously with establishing new refineries, OAPEC members are executing many developmental projects to upgrade the performance of existing oil refineries, including Bahrain’s Sitra Refinery. As for the petrochemicals industry, Arab countries managed to have an important status in the global markets since the mid-1990s until now. Arab countries’ total design capacity to produce ethylene in 2018 reached about 27 million tons/annum, while it was about 186 million tons worldwide in 2018 compared to 177 million tons in 2017.