Low oil prices benefit GCC aluminium industry
Official said low oil prices are creating more opportunities in the sector and is the “next big driver of the GCC’s economic diversification"
The decline in oil prices have proven beneficial to the GCC aluminium industry, said H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, UAE Minister of Finance, and Chairman of Dubai Aluminium (DUBAL).
The Shiekh made his comments on the sidelines of the 20th Arab International Aluminium Conference (ARABAL), the Middle East’s premier aluminium industry gathering, which opened in Dubai on Tuesday, WAM reported.
Sheikh Hamdan said: “Due to the slump in oil prices, many aluminium smelters are replacing oil with natural gas and clean coal in running their operations.”
''While some global smelters have stopped growing and others plunged into recession, aluminium plants in the UAE and GCC are evolving and expanding into other world markets.”
''There is no glut in the UAE market and our prime objective is to market our products,'' Sheikh Hamdan added.
In another report, Abdulla Jassem bin Kalban, MD and CEO of Emirates Global Aluminium said that low oil prices are creating more opportunities in the sector and is the “next big driver of the GCC’s economic diversification" to further non-oil private sector growth.
To maintain a balanced budget, the UAE federal government has set a spending target of AED48.5bn ($13bn) for 2016 with several infrastructure projects continuing, Kalban noted.
He stressed however that social welfare is a priority, though economic diversification away from oil remains key.