Wave of Fossil Fuel Dislike amongst the Young

Further to our Demand May Top Out Before Supply Does, here is an interesting article on the side-lines of one of the Oil Industry’s concerns as elaborated on this report of the IBT on the recently held 22nd World Petroleum Congress – Istanbul, 2017 where it was a question of how age and gender could obviously affect the industry to survive this wave of fossil fuel dislike amongst the young.  The unleashing of a frenzy amongst today’s youth as Fossil Free is a growing international divestment movement calling for organisations, institutions and individuals to demonstrate climate leadership and end their financial support for the fossil fuel industry.

No industry for old men: Why ‘Big Oil’ needs to woo younger, female workforce

Energy industry’s lack of appeal for women and the young remains a major cause for concern.

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Further to our Demand May Top Out Before Supply Does, here is an interesting article on the side-lines of one of the Oil Industry’s main concerns as elaborated on this report of the IBT on the recently held 22nd World Petroleum Congress – Istanbul, 2017 where it was a question of how age and gender could obviously affect the industry to survive this wave of fossil fuel dislike amongst the young.  The unleashing of a frenzy amongst today’s youth as Fossil Free is a growing international divestment movement calling for organisations, institutions and individuals to demonstrate climate leadership and end their financial support for the fossil fuel industry.

No industry for old men: Why ‘Big Oil’ needs to woo younger, female workforce

WPC 2017

Energy industry’s lack of appeal for women and the young remains a major cause for concern.

By Gaurav Sharma in Istanbul, Turkey

Updated on July 14, 2017 20:22 BST

It may not be as pressing an issue for the World Petroleum Congress (WPC) as the crude oil price slump, but had you asked around the oil and gas industry’s recently concluded triennial jamboree held in Istanbul, Turkey, plenty of high profile people would point to a lack of female executives as a major concern.

Furthermore, equally concerning is the perceived loss of the industry’s appeal for young professionals choosing a career pathway. To his credit, Dr Jozsef Toth, President of World Petroleum Council, which has been organising the congress since 1933, acknowledged the problem in his very first quip of the event.

“Oil and gas will play a role in the energy mix for decades to come. Yet, at the same time the number of people joining the energy industry is declining.”

Much more needs to be done when it comes addressing the gender balance in the business, he added. “We are committed to changing this, as well as showcasing the talent of female industry executives to inspire.”

That’s all well and good; but a cursory look around the WPC plenary halls, auditoriums and corridors by your correspondent found an overwhelming number of delegates of the male and middle-aged variety, regardless of which country they were travelling from.

Of course, there was a young professionals’ floor and youth congress, and events such as a youth night and a ‘Women in Energy’ breakfast.

Despite being well-intentioned objectives aimed at promoting dialogue, to many participants interviewed by IBTimes UK they seemed to be perfunctory box-ticking exercises being conducted because a mega industry event of the WPC’s size could not possibly, not have them. The previous Congress in Doha (2011) and Moscow (2014) had the very same events.

Hope is that the hard work in attracting young recruits and tackling the gender imbalance will finally begin in earnest once WPC’s 6,000-odd delegates, 500 CEOs, 50 Ministers and heads of state go home and ponder about it.

For that to happen, it is worth getting a deeper understanding of the problem first, according to Deborah Byers, US Oil & Gas Practice leader at global consultancy EY. A recent polling exercise in the US by Byers’ colleagues found that most of the younger generation perceive oil and gas jobs as a bit too blue collar and dangerous.

“That’s generation Z – or post-Millennials – typically born in the mid-1990s to early 2000s to you and me. We also find a disconnect between what oil and gas executives think young people want from a career and what they actually want. There’s a general lack of awareness about the industry and the careers that power it, and a substantial gender gap.”

When EY asked which three considerations are the most important in selecting a future career, both Millennials and Generation Z, as a whole, prioritised salary (56%), good work-life balance (49%), job stability (37%) and on-the-job happiness (37%).”

However, oil and gas executives polled expected the leading career drivers for young people to be salary (72%), technology (43%), good work-life balance (38%), and the opportunity to try new roles (28%). The study also found that only 24% of women in the 16-35 age group find oil and gas jobs appealing, while 54% of men in the same age range find them appealing.

The findings were based on a survey of 1,204 US consumers and 109 industry executives conducted earlier this year. In the wider scheme of things, the consultancy’s findings offer only a glimpse into the thinking of female and young people hunting career prospects. However, what it also does is flag up the enormity of the task ahead.

“In an era of lower for longer, some say lower forever oil prices, the industry has a call to action to solve this perception problem for the sake of their future workforce and their success,” Byers concludes.

Dr Jozsef Toth, President of World Petroleum Council, says the industry must improve its appeal to younger recruits and female aspirants.Gaurav Sharma / IB Times UK

Paradoxically, Eithne Treanor, a seasoned energy sector broadcaster and conference moderator based in Dubai, feels it’s the low price environment that is putting people off.

“Oil and gas companies aren’t in hiring mode in any case to begin with, as opportunities from geology to engineering, management to on-site operations dwindle. Furthermore, young people and suitable female candidates ask themselves should I really choose a future in an industry that’s in decline or at least appears to be.”

While the oil price environment is a relatively recent development, Treanor said the industry’s problem of attracting fewer qualified female professionals and its lack of appeal to youngsters also has to do with historical reputational problems.

“The industry has been quite poor at engaging with young people, something I feel it is attempting to rectify. When the idea is to catch them young, leaving it till they are at university is a bit too late; I’d say go all the way lower to junior school.

“For example – a programme started by a science professor in Lebanon called ‘The Young Engineer’ has been running for 10 years and piques the interest of kids when they are 5-6 years old.”

Specifically on the subject of attracting female talent, Trainer said: “Look around the WPC, majority of the panel discussions and deliberations have mostly male speakers. The lack of diversity is visible. Some women have risen through the industry ranks and have become role models, and are indeed here, but there are not that many.”

Positive discrimination is needed, she added, including perhaps an introduction of the Norwegian model of mandatory quotas for women to be on corporate boards and in positions of authority.

iStock

Time is running out, and the industry needs to act fast, according Aleek Datta, Managing Director at consultancy Accenture.

“In 2011, around $590bn (£455bn) was spent on petrotechnical workforce development, which rose to a commendable $760bn in 2014. However, oil price slump hit and spending on talent fell to $570bn in 2015, and has been in decline ever since.

“If we assume oil demand will increase, yet spending on talent continues at its current level, the global industry will have 30% deficit of petrotechnical professionals as early as 2020.

“The oil and gas industry is losing the fight for top millennial talent, as young professionals prefer other industries, like the technology industry. Only 2% of US graduates, according our research, consider oil and gas as a primary career choice.”

To some it might seem counterintuitive to invest in attracting and training young professionals and wooing more women to the industry when the oil price is down, but the risk of not doing so could be even more dire.

 

A new Saudi Arabia will gradually be emerging

A new Saudi Arabia will gradually be emerging as this seems to be the word that is the leitmotiv of the young and fresh at the helm prince MbS (Mohammed bin Salman).  This latter’s elevation to heir to the crown at the age of 31 that was already showing in quiet and unheard of boldness is now blatantly in full sight.  Would this possibly generalise to a whole generation of leaders in the country’s life and take it towards modernity?  Would a radical reform program as embodied in the prince’s “Vision 2030” generate a new self-sufficient country living in good harmony with its neighbours and for this purpose would it need all that accumulated wealth from oil related revenues since its advent in the 30s to be ploughed in to generate conditions that are perhaps propitious to another vision?  Or would all this just lead to more clinging to Tradition, survival endurance and frictions of all sorts as restricted OPEC oil output and US shale oil production seem to be the other leitmotiv of the time.

A new Saudi Arabia will gradually be emerging as this seems to be the word that is the leitmotiv of the young and fresh at the helm prince MbS (Mohammed bin Salman).  This latter’s elevation to heir to the crown at the age of 31 that was already showing in quiet and unheard of boldness is now blatantly in full sight.  Would this possibly generalise to a whole generation of leaders in the country’s life and take it towards modernity?  Would a radical reform program as embodied in the prince’s “Vision 2030” generate a new self-sufficient country living in good harmony with its neighbours and for this purpose would it need all that accumulated wealth from oil related revenues since its advent in the 30s to be ploughed in to generate conditions that are perhaps propitious to another vision?  Or would all this just lead to more clinging to Tradition, survival endurance and frictions of all sorts as restricted OPEC oil output and US shale oil production seem to be the other leitmotiv of the time.
In any case, lots of speculative writings are coming to enlighten us on the situation of the country.  Bloomberg’s Donna Abu-Nasr  and Zainab Fattah and published on June 23, 2017.

Saudi Arabia’s New Heir Leads Revolution of Powerful Millennials

The youngest crown prince in living memory represents a broader youth revolution in Saudi Arabia.

While the elevation of Prince Mohammed bin Salman, 31, as heir to the throne this week caught the attention, some of his cousins and relatives whose fathers held key posts in past decades have been installed in the royal court as advisers, sent to the U.S. and Europe as ambassadors and appointed to government institutions in Riyadh.

Together, they are some of the world’s most powerful millennials, increasingly in control of a Gulf kingdom where two-thirds of the population is under 35. The challenge will be to sell Prince Mohammed’s “Vision 2030,” his road map to a post-oil economy that will require social upheaval and financial sacrifices never experienced by this generation.

“Having young princes at the helm, who understand young people’s needs, is the message being sent,” said Sanam Vakil, associate fellow at Chatham House’s Middle East and North Africa program. “Perhaps the princes can talk in the same language as the youth and listen to their concerns so they would be able to address them in more effective ways.”

Prince Mohammed is likely to be among his country’s youngest kings with a potential for his rule to last half a century. He joins a roster of youth wielding more power elsewhere. French President Emmanuel Macron is 39, Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump in the U.S. are 36 and 35 and Ireland’s new prime minister is 38. Then there’s North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. He’s thought to be around 33.

The decision by the prince’s father, King Salman, to pick some of his younger children as well as grandsons and great-grandsons of the kingdom’s founder is meant to ensure a smooth transition in the royal household. It also comes under the watchful eye of the older traditionalists.

Saudi Arabia is going through arguably the biggest changes since the kingdom’s founding in 1932. The new crown prince is aiming to effectively tear up a lot of the social contract that’s kept the royal family in power to create jobs and modernize the economy. It was one of state handouts in return for adherence to an autocracy underpinned by an ultra-conservative brand of Islam.

The appointments are a way to protect Prince Mohammed when he becomes monarch, said Nabeel Khoury, a former U.S. State Department official who is now non-resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, an American organization focusing on foreign affairs.

It avoids the dangers of the old guard “using their old contacts against the new king,” he said. “The transition to youth is a good story,” but the way it was done “does not necessarily imply good things for the future of the country,” he said.

The new appointees include Prince Khalid bin Bandar, who is being sent to Germany as ambassador. His father, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, was one of the most powerful Saudi envoys to Washington and later was in charge of intelligence. Another is Prince Abdullah, now an advisor to the royal court and son of Prince Khalid, who served as deputy defense minister.

Along with Prince Mohammed, the king has appointed another young son — he is under 30 — as ambassador to the U.S. and another one as minister of state for energy. While other kings have sought to help and encourage their children, “this was the most blatant act of nepotism ever in Saudi Arabia,” said Khoury.

There’s also the new interior minister. Born in 1983, Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Nayef will succeed his uncle, the ousted crown prince who successfully managed to halt al-Qaeda in Saudi Arabia when he headed the ministry.

With so many young faces in charge, change may come faster to Saudi Arabia, but also potentially without the careful deliberation about the effects on society, said Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, Middle East fellow at Rice University’s Baker Institute.

“King Salman has been, for decades, the family ‘enforcer’ of discipline and the keeper of the family secrets,” said Ulrichsen. “If the family files are not picked up by someone of similar stature to Salman, there is a risk that discipline within the Al Saud may begin to fragment if the unifying glue becomes loosened.”

Read More: a QuickTake Explainer on Saudi Arabia

Qatar Crisis that is Widening by the Day

This is the 5th day MENA-Forum is dedicated to the Qatar Crisis that is Widening by the Day and getting to be centre stage despite what is happening elsewhere in the MENA region.  A border closed between Morocco and Algeria, Libya ruled by 2 governments, the Palestinian territories lead by 2 separate peoples organisations, Somalia in the middle of nowhere, Syria on its way to total destruction and Iraq coming out of years of upheaval as shrunk as it never has been.
These are only but a few of the on-going traumatic tragedies that are still unfolding as times flies.  We are not trying to belittle the currently on-going internal saga between the GCC countries by any mean but we believe it is worthwhile to place it within its regional context.
Meanwhile here is the same as seen Dawn from Pakistan where a number of residents in the Gulf originate as well from.  These along with others such as citizens from India, Nepal, the Philippines, etc. form indeed the large majority of the populations.  They are the expatriate work force that literally make and keep making the Gulf going on about providing the world with oil and gas all year round.

Arab nations add names to terror list amid Qatar dispute

AP Published by June 9th, 2017

Arab countries put 12 organisations and 59 people on a terror sanctions list early Friday they described as being associated with Qatar, the latest in a growing diplomatic dispute that seen the country isolated by Saudi Arabia and others.

Qatar dismissed the terror listing as part of “baseless allegations that hold no foundation in fact,” standing by earlier defiant statements by its top diplomat to The Associated Press that Arab nations had no “right to blockade my country.”

The sanctions list further tightens the screws on Qatar, home to a major US military base and the host of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, and shows the crisis only escalating despite Kuwaiti efforts to mediate an end to the rift.

Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates said they sanctioned the groups and individuals because of “the continuous and ongoing violations of the authorities in Doha of Qatar’s commitments and obligations.”

 

Six of the organisations are already considered militant groups in Bahrain, an island home to the US Navy’s 5th Fleet and an under-construction British naval base. Bahrain has been gripped by a government crackdown on dissent for over a year now.

Among the individuals named is Youssef al-Qaradawi, an Egyptian-born cleric considered a spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood. Al-Qaradawi has been tried and sentenced to death in absentia in Egypt since the 2013 military overthrow of elected President Mohammed Morsi, a Brotherhood member.

Other names involving Egypt include more Brotherhood members and those once belonging to Gamaa Islamiya, a group that carried out a series of bloody attacks in Egypt in the 1990s before renouncing violence in 2000s. One is the brother of the Gamaa Isalmiya assassin who killed Egyptian leader Anwar Sadat in 1981.

Egypt separately has asked the United Nations Security Council to investigate reports that Qatar “paid up to $1 billion to a terrorist group active in Iraq” to recently free 26 hostages, including members of its ruling family, saying it would violate UN sanctions.

Names involving Libya include militia commanders and the Benghazi Defence Brigade, which is battling forces commanded by Gen. Khalifa Hifter, who has the backing of Egypt and the UAE amid that country’s chaos.

The sole Yemeni, Abdel-Wahab al-Humayqani, is the leader of a Salafi party whose has been accused by the US of financing Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the terror group’s branch in Yemen.

Qatar long has denied supporting or funding terror groups. However, Western diplomats accuse Qatar’s government of allowing or even encouraging the funding of some Sunni extremists, like Al Qaeda’s branch in Syria.

Responding to the list overnight, Qatar issued a statement saying: “We do not, have not and will not support terrorist groups.” “We lead the region in attacking the roots of terrorism by giving young people hope through jobs, replacing weapons with pens by educating hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees and funding local community programs globally to challenge extremist agendas,” it said.

In a wide-ranging interview Thursday with the AP, Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani repeatedly denied that his country funded extremists and he rejected the idea of shutting down its Al Jazeera satellite news network, something suggested as a demand of the Arab nations.

He said Qatar, as an independent nation, also had the right to support groups like the Muslim Brotherhood, despite the fact that its neighbours view it as a threat to their hereditary rule.

Sheikh Mohammad’s hard line mirrored that of a top Emirati diplomat who told the AP on Wednesday that the United Arab Emirates believes “there’s nothing to negotiate” with Qatar. “If anyone thinks they are going to impose anything on my internal affairs or my internal issues, this is not going to happen,” Sheikh Mohammad said.

Worried residents have responded to the crisis by emptying grocery stores in the capital of Doha, and Saudi Arabia has blocked trucks carrying food from entering the country across its only land border. Doha is a major international travel hub, but flagship carrier Qatar Airways now flies increasingly over Iran and Turkey after being blocked elsewhere in the Middle East.

On Wednesday, Emirati officials shut down the airline’s offices in the UAE. Al Jazeera’s offices have been shut down by authorities in Saudi Arabia and Jordan. The network also said Thursday night that its websites had come under a sustained cyber attack.

Turkey’s parliament, on the other hand, has approved sending troops to an existing Turkish base in Qatar as a sign of support.

US President Donald Trump, who tweeted Tuesday about Qatar funding extremists, called Qatari ruler Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani on Wednesday and offered to host leaders at the White House to resolve the crisis.

But Sheikh Mohammed told the AP on Thursday that Sheikh Tamim “is not going to leave the country while the country is in blockade,” in effect turning down the mediation offer. Analysts have raised the prospect of a palace coup in Qatar, a hereditary monarchy ruled by the Al Thani family that has a history of such changes in leadership.

Trump’s administration later suggested US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who as Exxon Mobil’s CEO had business with Qatar, as a possible mediator.

 

 

Crises between Qatar and its Neighbours

For many, crises between Qatar and its neighbours severing all diplomatic, trans border air, land and sea transportation and diplomatic representation could possibly lead to a schism in the Gulf and as a consequence to potential disruption in the supply of Oil & Gas to the rest of the world. in the meantime, well informed personalities are calling for the US to come into the arena so as to mediate unless these prefer to leave it to Russia and / or Iran to move in. Trump dives into Qatar feud, but will America follow him ? Wonders Brian Whitaker in al-bab.

For many, crises between Qatar and its Neighbours severing all air, land and sea transportation and diplomatic representation could possibly lead to a schism in the Gulf and as a consequence to potential disruption in the supply of Oil & Gas to the rest of the world.  in the meantime, well informed personalities are calling for the US to come into the arena so as to mediate unless these prefer to leave it to Russia and / or Iran to move in. Trump dives into Qatar feud, but will America follow him ? Wonders Brian Whitaker in al-bab.  

Continue reading “Crises between Qatar and its Neighbours”

QATAR, the tiny Emirate accused of convenience with . . .

On Monday, June 5, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Yemen, Bahrain, Egypt and the Maldives decided to sever their diplomatic relations with Qatar.  They suddenly decided  that QATAR, the tiny Emirate accused of convenience with . . . Iran and Islamist movements, the two main sources of destabilization in the region according to them was to pay the price.

These countries have accompanied their decision of retaliation with the closure of their land and sea borders, the suspension of the flights of their airlines to Doha, Qatar capital city, the closure of their airspace to Qatar Airways, the country’s state carrier and restrictions on the movement of people.  Qatar has also been excluded from the recent military coalition operating in Yemen under Saudi command.  Everybody agrees that there will be no “escalation” on the part of Qatar and that it is only about forcing Qatar to fall in line.

A review of the country’s history could explain this on-going saga as since its independence in 1971, the small Emirate of Qatar plays it as it were solo.

Pearling and fishing brought populations from the nearby main Arabia peninsula as well as from across the Gulf, e.g. Iran.  Bahrain had the upper hand until the Ottomans in the late 19th century decided otherwise.

In 1916, Britain and Qatar sign an agreement for the protection and control of external affairs of Qatar.

In 1939, oil reserves were discovered and became Qatar’s main source of revenue, replacing pearling and fishing.

In 1968 Britain withdraws from the gulf and Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE decide to set up a federation.

In 1971 Qatar is independent but refused to join the other principalities of the Arab side of the Gulf, who after the departure of the British, formed the UAE.

Squirmishes about borders delineations here and there between the neighbouring countries had envenomed the neighbourhood.  And at the time, this refusal of moving in and join the Emirates has apparently something that Abu Dhabi, the main UAE Emirate, never taken lightly.  Since then however, Qatar did not only increase in stature but went on especially in the early 1990s, to develop his immense field of gas.  This gave it the means towards diplomatic activism and development of its now renowned soft power, by investing in sport, culture, museums, etc.  Soft power of Qatar as symbolized by winning the hosting of the World Cup, collided in a certain way with the Emirate of Dubai, Member of the UAE ambitions.

The latest piece of news always in line with the above is Turkey throwing its weight behind Qatar.  Troops will follow this decision and will presumably be stationed per the understanding on a Turkish base in Qatar.

An Old Saudi Arabia’s Feud with Qatar

Following on The GCC rift deepens helping oil prices up, the situation got apparently complicated and seems to go back to an Old Saudi Arabia’s Feud with Qatar. For now, and according the latest newscasts of the local media, to go on worsening before any resolutions of differences are found.

Following on The GCC rift deepens helping oil prices up, the situation got apparently complicated and seems to go back to an Old Saudi Arabia’s Feud with Qatar.  For now, and according the latest newscasts of the local media, to go on worsening before any resolutions of differences are found.  The countries that decided to cut their diplomatic ties took this Tuesday morning measures such as closing landing and airspace privileges to Qatari airplanes “until further notice”.  Qatari nationals and residents were given a 2 weeks’ notice to leave their country of residence.
In a tiny peninsular desert country that is Qatar, almost totally reliant on its imports for all facets of its life, it would have now to adopt drastic changes to its sourcing of food, machinery, electronics and most importantly buildings materials and equipment for sustenance of its World Cup program.
Bloomberg published this article written by Marc Champion giving the background of the story.

Saudi Arabia’s Feud with Qatar Has 22-Year History Rooted in Gas

June 6, 2017

Saudi Arabia’s isolation of Qatar has been brewing since 1995, and the dispute’s long past and likely lingering future are best explained by natural gas.

Not only was that the year when the father of the current emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, toppled his own pro-Saudi father, it was also when the tiny desert peninsula was about to make its first shipment of liquid natural gas from the world’s largest reservoir. The offshore North Field, which provides virtually all of Qatar’s gas, is shared with Iran, Saudi Arabia’s hated rival.

The wealth that followed turned Qatar into not just the world’s richest nation, with an annual per-capita income of $130,000, but also the world’s largest LNG exporter. The focus on gas set it apart from its oil producing neighbors in the Gulf Cooperation Council and allowed it to break from domination by Saudi Arabia, which in Monday’s statement of complaint described Qataris as an “extension of their brethren in the Kingdom” as it cut off diplomatic relations and closed the border.

Instead, Qatar built its own ties with other powers including Iran, the U.S. — Qatar hosts U.S. Central Command — and more recently, Russia. Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund agreed last year to invest $2.7 billion in Russia’s state-run Rosneft Oil Co. PJSC.

“Qatar used to be a kind of Saudi vassal state, but it used the autonomy that its gas wealth created to carve out an independent role for itself,” said Jim Krane, energy research fellow at Rice University’s Baker Institute, in Houston, Texas. “The rest of the region has been looking for an opportunity to clip Qatar’s wings.”

Trump’s Visit

That opportunity came with U.S. President Donald Trump’s recent visit to Saudi Arabia, when he called on “all nations of conscience” to isolate Iran. When Qatar disagreed publicly, in a statement the government later said was a product of hacking, the Saudi-led retribution followed.

Critically, Qatar’s natural gas output has been free from entanglement in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, the oil cartel that Saudi Arabia dominates.

The new emir, having survived a counter-coup attempt in 1996, didn’t build pipelines that would have integrated Qatar into the markets of its Gulf neighbors. Two senior Qatari government officials alleged during the trial of the coup plotters in 2000 that Bahrain helped to organize the attempt with Saudi Arabia’s consent, according to a report by the BBC.

At the time, those much richer oil states saw natural gas as virtually worthless, useful mainly for injecting back into oil wells to improve extraction rates. They were willing to pay only a fraction of the world market price for LNG, according to a paper Krane co-authored with Qatar University’s Steven Wright.

The sole pipeline built, the Dolphin project connecting Qatar’s North Field to the United Arab Emirates and Oman, has operated at half to two thirds capacity. Contracts signed last year should fill the rest, yet the vast majority of Qatar’s exports will continue to go to markets in Asia and Europe.

Angering Neighbors

More recently, demand for LNG to produce electricity and power industry has been growing in the Gulf states. They’re having to resort to higher-cost LNG imports and exploring difficult domestic gas formations that are expensive to get out of the ground, according to the research. Qatar’s gas has the lowest extraction costs in the world.

Qatar gas wealth enabled it to develop foreign policies that came to irritate its neighbors. It backed the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Hamas in the Gaza Strip and armed factions opposed by the UAE or Saudi Arabia in Libya and Syria. Gas also paid for a global television network, Al Jazeera, which at various times has embarrassed or angered most Middle Eastern governments.

Read More: Q&A on Why Qatar Angers Saudi Arabia and Its Allies

Above all, gas prompted Qatar to promote a regional policy of engagement with Shiite Iran to secure the source of its wealth.

Gas isn’t the immediate cause of the current showdown, but “you can question why Qatar has been unwilling to supply its neighboring countries, making them gas poor,” said Wright, the academic, speaking by telephone from the Qatari capital Doha. “There probably was an expectation that Qatar would sell gas to them at a discount price.”

What Next?

Adding to regional frustrations, in 2005, Qatar declared a moratorium on the further development of the North Field that could have provided more gas for local export.

Qatar said it needed to test how the field was responding to its exploitation, denying that it was bending to sensitivities in Iran, which had been much slower to draw gas from its side of the shared field. That two-year moratorium was lifted in April, a decade late, after Iran for the first time caught up with Qatar’s extraction rates.

“People here are scratching their heads as to exactly what the Saudis expect Qatar to do,” said Gerd Nonneman, professor of international relations and Gulf studies at Georgetown University’s Doha campus. “They seem to want Qatar to cave in completely, but it won’t call the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization, because it isn’t. And it isn’t going to excommunicate Iran, because that would jeopardize a relationship that is just too fundamental to Qatar’s economic development.”

The GCC rift deepens helping oil prices up

Saudi Arabia and its main allies by cutting diplomatic ties with Qatar, leader in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) production and exports, accusing it of supporting extremism have this Monday succeeded in sending shock waves in the industry of energy raising prices that in the end serve well all OPEC, non OPEC producers and of course the Big Oils. Could we assume that the GCC rift deepens helping oil prices up was a collateral effect or was it intentional?

Saudi Arabia and its main allies by cutting diplomatic ties with Qatar, leader in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) production and exports, accusing it of supporting extremism have this Monday succeeded in sending shock waves in the industry of energy raising prices that in the end serve well all OPEC, non OPEC producers and of course the Big Oils.  Could we assume that the GCC rift deepens helping oil prices up was a collateral effect or was it intentional?

The Saudi Arabian and the Sunni Muslim States celebrated block during the visit of President Donald Trump in Riyadh has been shattered in less than two weeks after the Summit.  This morning the cutting of all diplomatic ties between a coalitions led by Saudi Arabia of Bahrain, the UAE and Egypt has yet to produce any tangible effect on the rest of the world but it is assumed that it will definitely affect the oil production and eventually price.

Meanwhile, Oman has not pronounced itself with either although many find that there is close view on local politics between Qatar and Oman.

In the meantime, there are many and it is well known that a bad blood exist in the region at the start from the fact that all these nations including Saudi Arabia have all been artificially created on the basis of misunderstood criteria of ethnicities, religious and territorial demarcations, etc. in the last century and also mainly because of the actions of Arabia and the Iran alternately throughout the Middle East.

Trump has adopted at this Summit of Riyadh a line on terrorism that deflects blame from the Saudis to redirect it onto Iran. A more nuanced and realistic approach to the region could have been avoided if the local realism has been left in the care of local politicians unless Trump was intent on interfering in his his choice for the less harmful camp I.e. (the Saudis) against a potential stronger enemy that is more self-sufficient like Iran.  It could well be that Trump sees farther than these local politicians. Sheikh Tamim bin Hamid Al Thani, the emir of the Qatar, according to reports had indeed crossed the red line such as defined by the Saudis (obviously per Trump’s) on relationships with Iran after the Riyadh Summit, like all the other representatives of the GCC.

As a matter of fact, Qatar and all the GCC have relatively intense neighbouring economic links with Iran for ages stemming from the simple fact that all influential people in these countries have links of blood with Iran.  The most well known would be that of Sheikha Moza Bint Misnad, the mother of the Emir of the present Emir of Qatar is a perfect example, coming originally from a family of Iranian origin.