Jafza participates in ADIPEC to attract more oil & gas companies into the Free Zone
Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza), Dubai and the UAE’s flagship trade and logistics hub for the wider Middle East region and Africa has a growing customer base in the energy and petrochemicals sector with leading global companies expressing their interest in setting up facility in the free zone. Energy giants looking forward to establishing their presence in the Middle East, Africa and South Asian region remain upbeat about their expansion plans with oil prices showing an increasing trend this year.
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of DP World and Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, explained, “Middle East has traditionally been the hub for oil & gas industry. Nevertheless, the region is also increasingly shifting towards non-oil resources and raw materials opening new avenues for enterprises.”
Mr. Sulayem was speaking on Jafza’s participation at the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition & Conference (ADIPEC), the largest oil & gas exhibition in the Middle East underway at the capital from November 7-10, 2016.
He said, “ADIPEC is one of the most important events on our calendar. We have witnessed the exhibition grow over the years attracting the biggest and the best players from the energy industry. For Jafza, it is an opportunity to meet new investors and our current clients and explore new business avenues for the companies.”
According to a Business Monitor International (BMI) report, the oil production in the Middle East is expected to rise by 7.9% between 2015 and 2024, as the prices are beginning to show an upward trend; thus increasing the refining capacity of companies as the region steps up economic diversification, increasing domestic demand for crude. The oil output is projected to increase from an estimated 29.1 million barrels per day in 2015 to 31.4 million b/d by 2024.
The report further states that Middle East gas production was also set for growth as the region looked to substitute oil with gas in power generation. While natural gas production in the region was forecast to increase 23.5% from 611 bcm in 2015 to 754 bcm in 2025, the region is also expected to witness increased gas consumption over the next 10 years — from 504bcm in 2015 to 700bcm by 2025.
Jafza, with its strong base of over 850 oil and gas powerhouses from 77 countries, has established itself as the favoured destination for industrial and logistical set-up. The free zone’s strategic proximity to of the world’s largest service enablers — the Jebel Ali Port and Al Maktoum International Airport, underlines Jafza’s most efficient multi-modal connectivity.
Mr. Sulayem added, “Jafza, over the past 3 decades, has established itself as the region’s energy hub and continues to work towards the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai to establish the Emirate as the global centre for innovative business and investment destination. The seamless operations, coupled with superior infrastructure and on-the-go services augment our position among the free zones.
“With the oil prices stabilising in the last few months, the industry is set for a positive 2017. We expect companies to expand their businesses to newer markets in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia and Jafza offers the ideal gateway to the companies.”
The energy sector in Jafza provides employment to over 16,000 that comprises 12% of the total free zone employees and occupies an area of 5.91 million sqm of combined facilities. The Free Zone is currently home to a large number of industry leaders in the sector including Schlumberger, CEFC, ExxonMobil, GE Energy, DOW, Total, and CNPC.
Mr. Sulayem said, “Jafza has always been a customer-oriented oragnisation and the industry-focused facilities are designed to enable prospective investors to achieve their growth aspirations in the region. Our smart and innovative services reflect the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed of transforming Dubai into an international trade hub that offers value to its investors through effortless thoroughfare of their goods in the region and accelerates their business growth.
Oil and gas production in the UAE is set for a significant growth over the coming three to five years with a number of projects under development. The consumption outlook for both oil and gas is strong.
The Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association estimates that petrochemical producers in the GCC will increase their capacity by 40% over the next 7 years, reaching 199.5 million tonnes per annum (tpa) by 2018. Meanwhile, the UAE petrochemicals production almost doubled reaching 10 million tpa valued at USD4.9 billion, accounting roughly for 7% of the total GCC production capacity. The regional exports of petrochemical products were valued at USD55.5 billion reaching 177 countries worldwide, mainly to Asian markets.