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UAE energy minister says higher capacity aimed at stability of world oil markets

Country produced 2.70 million bpd in March, says IEA

Image Credit: WAM
Suhail Mohammad Al Mazroui, Minister of Energy, inaugurated the 21st Middle East Petroleum& Gas Conference in Abu Dhabi.
Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: The UAE is working towards raising its oil production capacity to 3.5 million barrels per day in an effort to contribute to the stability of the world oil markets, the Minister of Energy Suhail Mohammad Al Mazroui said on Monday.

Delivering the opening address at the 21st Middle East Petroleum & Gas Conference (MPGC-2013) in the capital, Al Mazroui said in spite of the uncertainty facing the oil industry in general and demand for oil in particular, it is certain that the “era of oil is still flourishing and long-term demand is expected to increase.”

The minister, specified no time frame when the desired oil production capacity would be achieved. The UAE oil industry executives previously said their target was 2018.

According to the estimates of the International Energy Agency (IEA), as of March, the UAE had a sustainable oil production capacity of 3.02 million bpd. The Paris-based IEA estimated the country’s oil output in March at 2.70 million bpd and its average output at 2.67 million bpd during the first quarter of 2013.

Al Mazroui said the global oil demand is expected to reach 105 million bpd by 2030, with some estimates projecting a demand as high as 112 million bpd.

“Oil producing countries such as the UAE are continuing with their investments in production capacities to meet the steadily increasing demand,” Al Mazroui added.

Later, speaking to reporters, Al Mazroui said he considers global oil markets to be “well balanced.”

“The market is well-balanced, and there is no oversupply in the market,” said Al Mazroui. “There is enough supply in the market.”

The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) oil ministers are due to meet on May 31 to decide their output policy.

The minister, in his speech, said the UAE has prioritised the energy sector in line with the following considerations: “Cooperation with members of Opec to contribute to the balance and stability of world oil markets; diversifying our sources of energy through investment in complimentary renewable sources, particularly increasing utilisation of solar and atomic energy; employing cutting-edge technologies to discover and exploit hydrocarbons; protection of the environment and conservation of energy usage in the UAE.”

He said the UAE is working on a strategy that will raise the percentage of energy from renewable sources.

“Nuclear energy is expected to account for 25 per cent of power production within the UAE through the operation of four nuclear power plants which will generate 5.6 gigawatts of electricity. The UAE has already embarked on generating electricity through its solar power plant — Shams 1 with a production capacity of 100 MW, (which is) the largest of its kind in the region,” Al Mazroui added.