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UAE Energy Minister says plans in place to diversify energy sources

Abu Dhabi: Suhail Bin Mohammad Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy, said the UAE is working on diversifying its energy sources according to a strategic plan to produce an energy mix where nuclear power accounts for 25 per cent, renewable energy for 5 to 7 per cent, and natural gas for 67 to 70 per cent of the total demand on power.

Minister Al Mazrouei told WAM that Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) is working on increasing its oil exports to 3.5 million barrels a day, and to increase onshore and offshore gas production, through projects worth more than $70 billion as part of Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030.

Commenting on the consequences of the Arab Spring on the energy sector in the Middle East, the energy minister emphasised the urgent need for a clear and diversified policy for the sector to enable the regional countries to ensure a better future for the coming generations through sustainable development and welfare.

Asked if he sees any effect on the UAE from shale gas production, the minister said, “As a producer, we cannot ignore this effect, but rather than considering it as a rival, we see it as a complementary source that helps meet the increasing global demand.”

The minister’s comments came ahead of the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (ADIPEC 2013) which runs between November 10 and 13.

Al Mazrouie also said that the energy ministry is working on rationalising consumption through improved technology and is set to change the culture of consumption in the country, noting that Emiratis now account for 80 per cent of the ministry’s workforce.