Google+ Followers

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Iran can set a post-Isis security policy for the region

Iran can set a post-Isis security policy for the region:

"The defeat of Isis has not just heralded the return of stability to large swaths of territory. It is also fanning fresh conflict and tension — including a concerted effort to revive the hysteria which has long obscured the reality of Iran’s foreign policy. Isis displayed the darkest depths of human evil. Yet it also provided an opportunity to come together to battle an existential threat. The co-operative relationships forged in this fight can usher in a new era. We need new approaches and new terminology to make sense of a world which is transitioning to a post-western global order. Here are two concepts to shape the emerging paradigm in west Asia: the idea of a strong region, and security networking, whereby small and large countries — even those with historical rivalries — contribute to stability. The objective of a strong region — as opposed to a quest for hegemony and the exclusion of other actors — is rooted in recognising the need to respect the interest of all stakeholders. Any domineering effort by one country is not only inappropriate but essentially impossible: those who insist on following that path create instability. The arms race in our region is an instance of this kind of destructive rivalry: siphoning vital resources into the coffers of arms manufacturers has contributed nothing to achieving peace and security. Militarism has only served to fuel disastrous adventurism."



'via Blog this'

Iraq to sign gas deal with US firm for southern field - The Peninsula Qatar

Iraq to sign gas deal with US firm for southern field - The Peninsula Qatar:

"Iraq will on Monday sign a memorandum of understanding with American energy company Orion to tap gas at an oil field in the south of the country, the petroleum ministry said. The Nahr Bin Omar field, situated in the hydrocarbon-rich Basra province, is currently producing 40,000 barrels of oil a day, but only a small part of the gas from the field is being exploited. Iraq is looking to tap its gas deposits to help overcome severe electricity shortfalls in the country of some 35 million people."



'via Blog this'

Agency affirms Qatar currency ratings despite Gulf crisis

Agency affirms Qatar currency ratings despite Gulf crisis:

"Capital Intelligence (CI), the international credit rating agency, has affirmed Qatar’s long-term foreign and local currency ratings of ‘AA-’ and short-term foreign and local currency ratings of ‘A1+’ despite the ongoing Gulf crisis. "Qatar’s ratings are supported by the country’s substantial economic wealth,” CI said, adding the country is the world’s third largest producer of natural gas after Russia and Iran and is by far the largest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG). According to the International Energy Association, the country has proven natural gas reserves of around 883tn cubic feet with a reserve to production ratio of around 58 years. Qatar’s prudent investment in large-scale LNG has contributed to one of the highest levels of GDP (gross domestic product) per capita in the world, estimated at $64,447 in 2017."



'via Blog this'

Iran may try to loosen Revolutionary Guard's grip on economy

Iran may try to loosen Revolutionary Guard's grip on economy:

"Iran’s supreme leader has ordered the Revolutionary Guard to loosen its hold on the economy, the country’s defense minister says, raising the possibility that the paramilitary organization might privatize some of its vast holdings. The comments this weekend by Defense Minister Gen. Amir Hatami appear to be a trial balloon to test the reaction of the idea, long pushed by Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani, a relative moderate. Protests over the country’s poor economy last month escalated into demonstrations directly challenging the government. But whether the Guard would agree remains unclear, as the organization is estimated to hold around a third of the country’s entire economy."



'via Blog this'

Oil producers will cooperate beyond 2018, says Saudi Arabia

Oil producers will cooperate beyond 2018, says Saudi Arabia:

"Global oil producers are in agreement that they should continue cooperating on production after their deal on supply cuts expires at the end of this year, Saudi Arabia’s energy minister Khalid al-Falih said on Sunday.

It was the first time Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, had publicly stated OPEC and non-OPEC producers would keep cooperating after 2018.

The exact mechanism for cooperation next year has not yet been decided, Falih said, but if oil inventories increase in 2018 as some in the market expect, producers might have to consider rolling the supply cut deal into next year."



'via Blog this'

MIDEAST STOCKS-Most of region falls, Saudi retreats further from technical barrier

MIDEAST STOCKS-Most of region falls, Saudi retreats further from technical barrier:

"Most Middle Eastern stock markets fell on Sunday with Saudi Arabia pulling further away from a major resistance level, although a surge by fuel distributor ADNOC Distribution buoyed Abu Dhabi. The Saudi index slipped 0.3 percent to 7,513 points, retreating from the July peak of 7,586 points. Dairy company Almarai dropped 1.2 percent after reporting fourth-quarter net profit of 513 million riyals ($137 million), down from 536 million riyals a year ago and below forecasts of 549 million riyals by SICO Bahrain and 531 million riyals by NCB Capital."



'via Blog this'

Does $70 a barrel mark the high point for oil?

Does $70 a barrel mark the high point for oil?:

"Brent crude oil started the week with a bang, hitting a three-year high of $70.37 a barrel. But the rapid run up in oil prices from below $45 a barrel just seven months ago has lead many investors to ask if $70 a barrel will mark the peak for the market? The reasons for caution are grounded largely in the resurgence of the US shale industry, which after weathering three years of lower prices is expected to roar back with higher production this year. The International Energy Agency on Friday raised its forecast for US production growth to 1.35m barrel a day this year, making up by far the biggest chunk of supply growth outside Opec countries. US oil output should surpass Saudi Arabia this year."



'via Blog this'

Kuwait Is Said to Join Gulf Bond Rush With Plans for Dollar Sale - Bloomberg

Kuwait Is Said to Join Gulf Bond Rush With Plans for Dollar Sale - Bloomberg:

"Kuwait is weighing plans to sell dollar-denominated bonds, according to people familiar with the matter, joining other Gulf Cooperation Council states also said to be considering sales.

Officials from the oil-rich Gulf nation have held talks with banks about the possibility of a sale as soon as the first quarter, two of the people said, asking not to be identified as the discussions are private. The bond is likely to be in line with or higher than Kuwait’s last issuance of $8 billion in March 2017, some of the people said.

Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi are planning to tap the debt market in the first quarter to help plug budget deficits, people familiar with the matter said earlier this month. Oman already raised $6.5 billion from a bond offering this year as the Middle East’s biggest non-OPEC producer also seeks to bridge a deficit."



'via Blog this'

Saudi Oil Minister Sees OPEC, Allies Cooperation Past 2018 - Bloomberg

Saudi Oil Minister Sees OPEC, Allies Cooperation Past 2018 - Bloomberg:

"OPEC and non-OPEC producers should stick with their supply cuts throughout 2018 and continue cooperating beyond that, oil ministers from Saudi Arabia and Oman said.

The crude market will take all of 2018 to reach a normal level, and oil ministers shouldn’t limit their efforts to this year, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih told reporters on Sunday in Muscat, Oman, before a meeting to assess compliance with the cuts. Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said ministers need to see how the market develops before deciding if there’s a need to adjust production caps.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies see merit in maintaining their output limits into 2019 and probably won’t discuss an exit strategy from their cuts agreement when the committee monitoring compliance meets on Sunday, Oman Oil Minister Mohammed Al Rumhy told reporters. Saudi Arabia’s Al-Falih said the market won’t re-balance in the first half, and ministers need to identify a normal inventory level more clearly before OPEC meets next in June."



'via Blog this'

Mideast Stocks: Gulf bourses mostly edge down in early trade | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Mideast Stocks: Gulf bourses mostly edge down in early trade | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Gulf stock markets mostly edged down on Sunday with Saudi Arabia pulling further away from a major resistance level, although a surge by fuel distributor ADNOC Distribution buoyed Abu Dhabi. The Saudi index slipped 0.3 percent to 7,518 points in the first hour, pulling away from the July peak of 7,586 points. Dairy company Almarai dropped 1.9 percent after reporting fourth-quarter net profit of 513 million riyals ($137 million), down from 536 million riyals a year ago and below forecasts of 549 million riyals by SICO Bahrain and 531 million riyals by NCB Capital. "



'via Blog this'