Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Saudi Arabia Urges 'Flexibility' In Switching to Clean Energy

Saudi Arabia Urges 'Flexibility' In Switching to Clean Energy

Thursday, 13 January, 2022 - 10:45
The Saudi Energy Minister with his Tunisian counterpart at the Future Minerals Summit on Wednesday (Photo: Mishaal Al-Qadiri)

Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman stressed that the world needs more flexibility to shift to clean energy.

Speaking at the Future Minerals Summit, currently held in Riyadh, the minister said: “I always repeat that the energy transition must be governed by three axes: ensuring energy security, helping billions of people who do not enjoy economic development and prosperity, and climate change.”

Warning against neglecting energy security, he underlined “the need to think carefully about the energy transition.”

“I’m still worried about the transition that takes us from a known future to the unknown,” he stated.

The Saudi Energy minister added that the process of energy transformation should be subject to precise considerations.

“We should not give up energy security for the sake of transformation,” he said, explaining that markets were the basis for determining the direction of world economy.

He continued: “The Kingdom has always been an energy-producing country, but the energy that we present today is that of the youth. We have the most precious energy resource represented in the ambitious young women and men who are leading this transformation.”

On the other hand, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman revealed a large stockpile of uranium resources in the Kingdom.

He added that Saudi Arabia was about to reveal its energy strategy, noting that the Saudi Mining Company (Maaden), the largest mining company in the region, would establish a subsidiary to invest abroad.

Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, said it wanted to take advantage of nuclear technology and use it to diversify its energy mix.

The Saudi Energy minister stressed that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, placed great emphasis on local content, pointing to related opportunities estimated at 2.8 trillion riyals ($746.6 billion) by 2030.

He also revealed expectations of an increase in demand for minerals by 600 percent.

On hydrogen energy, Prince Abdulaziz said: “We are serious about hydrogen production, and Saudi Arabia will be the cheapest producer of clean hydrogen energy.”

Organized by the Saudi Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resource on Jan.11-13, the Future Minerals Summit represents an opportunity for governments, companies and investors to discuss various issues and challenges facing the sector over the past two years.

Editor Picks