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Last update: Sun, 07 Feb 2016 03pm

Middle East & Africa

Markets - Energy - Middle East & Africa

Oil price slump to reduce Egypt's fuel subsidies to 55bn pounds: minister CAIRO: The decline in global oil prices will reduce Egypt's fuel subsidy bill to around 55 billion Egyptian pounds ($7 bln) in 2015/16, Egypt's Petroleum Minister Tarek El Molla told reporters on Monday.Egypt, which has been facing an energy shortage, had earmarked around 61 billion pounds in its 2015/16 budget for fuel product subsidies.Fuel subsidies have long weighed on the state's budget and contributed to economic stagnation, which President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi promised to tackle when he took office in 2014.The government cut fuel subsidies in the summer of 2014, raising prices by up to 78 percent, in a move lauded by economists but criticized by some Egyptians accustomed to cheap energy.The government had forecast a budget deficit of 8.9 percent of gross domestic product for 2015/16, assuming the previous estimate of 61 billion pounds for fuel subsidies.Egypt, which used to be a net energy exporter had turned into a ...

Markets - Energy - Middle East & Africa

Saudi Arabia's oil output steady in Dec at 10.144mn bpd DUBAI: Saudi Arabia kept its crude oil production steady in December, an industry source said, maintaining high output as part of a strategy to preserve market share despite a slump in oil prices.The OPEC heavyweight pumped 10.144 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil last month, while crude supplied to the market in December was 10.162 million bpd, the source told Reuters on Sunday.Supply to the market, both domestically and for export, may differ from ...

Markets - Energy - Middle East & Africa

Nine facts about oil giant Saudi Aramco RIYADH: Saudi Arabia, the world's biggest oil exporter, is reportedly considering issuing shares in state-owned oil giant Saudi Aramco.Here are nine facts about the firm which analyst Ole Hansen of Saxo Bank said "undoubtedly would be one of the biggest in the world".-Headquartered on Saudi Arabia's Gulf Coast in Dhahran, where it drilled its first test well in 1935-Sits on crude oil reserves of 261.1 billion barrels, 10 times more than US conglomerate ExxonMobil-Produces roughly ...

Markets - Energy - Middle East & Africa

Egyptian government approves Chinese coal-fired power plant proposals CAIRO: Egypt's cabinet has approved two conditional contracts with Chinese firms to produce electricity from coal-fired plants with a total capacity of over 4000 megawatts, Electricity Minister Mohamed Shaker said on Wednesday.China's Dongfang Electric Corporation plans to build a plant with a capacity of 1,980 megawatts while Shanghi Electric submitted an offer to construct four plants with a combined capacity of 2,400 megawatts, Shaker said at a news conference.Egypt has been facing a power shortage ...

Markets - Energy - Middle East & Africa

Iran-Saudi crisis punches another hole in OPEC unity PARIS: Escalating diplomatic tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia have added fresh strains on OPEC's unity as the cartel grapples with a common response to rock-bottom oil prices, experts said. While it produces a third of the world's oil, the group has struggled with crude values that have tumbled some 60 percent since mid-2014, falling below $40 (37 euros).Crafting a new way forward has become yet tougher since Saudi Arabia executed prominent Shiite cleric Nimr ...

Markets - Energy - Middle East & Africa

UAE'S ADNOC sets Dec Murban crude OSP at $37.25/bbl DUBAI: Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) cut its the December retroactive selling price for its benchmark Murban crude to $37.25 per barrel, down $6.30 from the month before, it said on Tuesday. That puts the December Murban official selling price (OSP) at a $2.66 per barrel premium to the average of Dubai quotes for the month, up 80 cents from the differential in November, Reuters data showed. Light, sour crude supply is expected to ...

Markets - Energy - Middle East & Africa

Egypt arrears owed to oil firms rises to $3 billion at end-2015 CAIRO: Egypt's outstanding arrears to foreign oil companies rose to $3 billion at the end of December 2015 from $2.7 billion at the end of October, Petroleum Minister Tarek El Molla told Reuters on Sunday. "The arrears owed to foreign oil companies by Egypt reached around $3 billion at the end of December," El Molla said. The ministry had said in September that Egypt aimed to reduce the arrears owed to foreign oil companies to ...