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GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] demand to curtail oil exports

Babu Das Augustine, Gulfnews
Dubai: Spiralling energy demand in the Gulf states, coupled with a gas-supply crunch, might lead to oil exports from the region falling during the summer, according to energy econ-omists.

A Lehman Brothers report puts the possible Gulf export shortfall due to high domestic demand at up to one million barrels per day (bpd).

… “Oil-boom-fuelled economic growth, together with spiralling populations and subsidy-driven consumer patterns, have made the Gulf states some of the largest per-capita energy consumers in the world. Meanwhile, most of the countries have failed to bring sufficient amounts of new gas onstream, leading to a growing use of oil in power generation,” said Samuel Ciszuk, Middle East energy analyst with Global Insight.
(6 April 2008)

Dubai power shortage continues to deepen, say reports

Business Intelligence Middle East
UAE. Dubai’s decision to open its power industry to foreign investors, ending a 50-year monopoly, is a sign of the Emirate’s growing panic that the US$300 billion construction boom is outpacing supplies of water and electricity.

Dubai’s power consumption will quadruple to 21,000 megawatts, equivalent to half of Florida’s, over the next 12 years if growth doesn’t slow sharply.

Burj Dubai, the world’s tallest skyscraper, being built off Dubai’s main Sheikh Zayed highway, will gobble up 150 megawatts of power, equivalent to about 10% of the power produced by a new-generation nuclear reactor.

A report by Zawya Dow Jones points out that poor energy planning means that in a region that controls 60% of the world’s oil and 40% of known natural gas stocks Dubai finds itself begging its neighbours for energy.
(6 April 2008)

Qatar says it will continue to peg its currency to the falling dollar

Associated Press
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates: Qatar will not depeg or revalue its currency despite increasing pressure on oil-rich Gulf states to sever their links to the falling dollar, Qatar’s central bank governor said Sunday.

Oil is priced in dollars on the world market, but many Gulf countries rely on government-subsidized imports priced in euros and other currencies that have been rising against the greenback.

This relationship has pushed up the price of imports, a dilemma that could get worse as fears of a recession in the U.S. and related interest rate cuts continue to push down the dollar.
(6 April 2008)

Iranian Pres. calls for joint OPEC bank, currency

Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad Sunday called for a joint bank and currency for member states of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC).

This came during Ahmedinejad’s meeting with OPEC’s Secretary General Abdullah Al-Badri who is on a current visit to Tehran.

The Iranian President pointed out that the current situation in the global oil market called for such unification, noting that oil importing states were achieving more financial gain than those exporting the vital energy source.

Al-Badri said on his part that the current price of oil was unreasonable and added that OPEC was currently studying plans to consider other currencies rather than the US dollar.

He lauded Iran’s efforts in OPEC, affirming the significance of OPEC’s unity.
(6 April 2008)