RIYADH: Qatar is making an attempt to push the merits of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, while the US is investing in carbon removal technology to help it achieve zero emissions.
Meanwhile, Russia’s Gazprom confirms stable natural gas supply to Europe, and Japan’s Toyota is allocating a significant budget to produce electric vehicle parts in India, in line with its carbon neutrality goals.
Looking at the bigger picture:
Through a micro lens:
RIYADH: Following record first-quarter results by Saudi Aramco, Al Rajhi Capital said it expects the oil giant to maintain dividends at 2021 levels this year.
The annual dividend per share is anticipated at SR1.4 ($0.4), the same as last year’s payout, although it can potentially raise it to SR1.7 per share, the investment firm said in a recent report.
Saudi Aramco recently posted an 82 percent profit surge from SR81 billion to SR148 billion for the first quarter of the ongoing year — the highest since its listing in 2019.
Al Rajhi Capital had earlier forecasted a slightly lower profit of SR140 billion for the oil major.
It attributed the above-estimate profit to lower production costs in addition to a 30 percent jump in oil prices, driven by strong energy demand, low crude inventories, and geopolitical factors.
“We believe we are still far away from the peak of oil demand globally, which could be upwards of 110 million barrels per day by 2030, when Aramco could increase its market share to 10 percent, to 11 million barrels per day,” said Mazen Al-Sudairi, financial analyst at Al Rajhi.
“Our target price for the stock remains unchanged at SR42 per share,” he added.
RIYADH: Oil prices extended gains on Wednesday on hopes of demand recovery in China as the country gradually eases some of its strict COVID-19 containment measures.
Brent crude futures were up 48 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $112.41 a barrel at 0410 GMT, while US West Texas Intermediate crude futures climbed 93 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $113.33 a barrel, paring some losses after oil prices fell by around 2 percent in the previous session.
EU, Hungary split over Russian oil embargo
The EU and Hungary are negotiating financial support for Budapest so that it lifts its veto on the bloc’s planned embargo on Russian oil, but they remain split over funds for refineries, sources told Reuters on Tuesday.
The EU commission this month proposed a new package of sanctions against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, which would include a total ban on oil imports in six months’ time, but the measures have not yet been adopted, with Hungary being among the most vocal critics of the plan.
Hungary’s Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said on Monday that the total cost for Hungary to wean itself off Russian energy would be up to 18 billion euros ($19 billion).
But in talks with the EU, Budapest has indicated that a much smaller figure could be enough in the short-term to address its concerns.
It has demanded about 750 million euros to be invested in expanding an oil pipeline that connects the country to Croatia, and to convert refineries that run on Russian oil to different types of crude, Szijjarto and sources said.
Of these funds, up to 550 million euros would be needed to upgrade two refineries run by Hungarian energy group MOL in Hungary and Slovakia which can currently only process Russian oil.
MOL had said the cost for the upgrade will be between $500 million and $700 million.
The EU has repeatedly shown its backing to the expansion of the Croatian pipeline, but is dithering about offering Hungary full support to convert private refineries, as that could be an unfair aid in breach of the bloc’s competition rules, one official familiar with the talks told Reuters, adding that talks were underway about how much could be offered.
The official also said that Hungary’s alternative request to fully exempt piped oil from sanctions against Russia was “a complete no go.” Hungary receives 65 percent of its oil from a Russian pipeline.
Malaysia’s Kimanis crude exports to fall in July
Exports of Malaysia’s flagship Kimanis crude will fall in July following outages at two offshore oil fields that produce the oil, according to a source familiar with the matter and a preliminary loading program.
There will be six Kimanis crude cargoes loading in July, including one cargo rolled over from the previous month, the program showed.
(With input from Reuters)
RIYADH: Riyadh-listed company Dallah Healthcare has posted solid profit and revenues for the first quarter of 2022, mainly supported by an increase in patient occupancy rates.
Net profit surged by 59 percent to SR86.9 million ($23 million) and sales hit SR609 million, up 23 percent from the same period a year ago, the company said in a filing to Tadawul.
The growth in revenues came on the back of higher hospital admissions during the quarter.
The healthcare group also cited an improvement in operational efficiency when compared to last year, which led to a lower cost to revenue ratio.
RIYADH: Bitcoin, the leading cryptocurrency internationally, traded lower on Tuesday, down 2.19 percent to $29,726 as of 10:36 a.m. Riyadh time.
Ether, the second most traded cryptocurrency, was priced at $2,025, down 2.34 percent, according to data from Coindesk.
G7 to discuss crypto-asset regulation: French Central Banker
The regulation of crypto-assets is likely to be discussed at a meeting of Group of Seven finance chiefs this week in Germany, French central bank head Francois Villeroy de Galhau said on Tuesday.
“What happened in the recent past is a wake-up call for the urgent need for global regulation,” Villeroy told an emerging markets conference in Paris, referring to the recent turbulence in crypto-asset markets.
“Europe paved the way with MICA (regulatory framework for crypto-assets), we will probably discuss these issues among many others at the G7 meeting in Germany this week,” he added.
BoE’s Cunliffe warns of more tough times for crypto
Investors in cryptocurrencies should expect more difficult times ahead as tightening financial conditions around the world stoke appetite for safer assets, Bank of England Deputy Governor Jon Cunliffe said on Tuesday.
Asked at a Wall Street Journal conference if rising interest rates would ramp up pressure on cryptocurrencies, Cunliffe said: “Yes, I think as this process continues, as (quantitative tightening) starts in the US … I think we’ll see a move out of risky assets.”
Cunliffe added that the conflict in Ukraine also had the potential to cause a renewed flight to safer assets.
“When there’s a move out of risky assets, you would expect the most speculative assets to be the ones most affected,” Cunliffe said.
(With input from Reuters)
RIYADH: Saudi Methanol Chemicals Co., or Chemanol, posted the highest quarterly profit since it was founded, climbing 244 percent in the first quarter of 2022.
The methanol manufacturer’s profit rose to SR103 million ($27 million), compared to SR30 million for the same period a year earlier, according to a bourse filing.
The results were largely driven by increased average selling prices despite higher production and supply chain costs.
Chemanol, one of the first private sector petrochemical companies in the Gulf Cooperation Council, has a paid-up capital of SR1.2 billion.