Uae:pipelinebegins activity in june to avoid Hormuz strait

70% crude oil to travel on land from Abu Dhabi to Fujhairah

28 May, 17:08

(ANSAmed) - DUBAI, MAY 28 - As scheduled, the pipeline which will allow transport of most of the United Arab Emirates' (UAE) crude oil towards the ocean without going through the Hormuz straight at the entrance to the Gulf of Arabia, will be operative within June.

The news is confirmed by the Sheik of Fujairah, Hamad bin Mohammad Al Sharqi, in an interview on the Emirates' newspaper Gulf News in which he also minimizes the fear of a war with Iran in the event that Teheran, as they have often threatened, might block the Hormuz straight in response to further sanctions directed to them due to their nuclear programme.

"It is a cloud which will pass," the Emir said. About 40% of the world's crude oil, and almost all of the regional produce, travels through the oil rigs which from the single terminals of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, UAE and Iraq, make their way to reach their final destinations, especially in direction of the Asian markets, crossing the strategic spot, a stretch of water just over 30km wide between the coasts of Iran and Oman.

The pipeline, 380km long, running from Habshan in the Abu Dhabi region until Fujhairah, the only Emirate of the seven in the UAE which is actually on the Arab Sea, will have an initial capacity of 1.5 million barrels per day, Sheik Hamad stated.

This potential will eventually reach 1.8 million barrels a day, about 70% of the average production in the UAE.

The Emirates' alternative is not the only one. The region's biggest economy, Saudi Arabia, already has a opening towards the Red Sea.

The East-West pipeline, which runs from Abqaiq, south of Dahran and Yanbu, on the shores of the Red Sea, has a transport capacity of 4.8 million bpd, around half of the kingdom's oil production. In the event of a crisis it can be increased to guarantee a major flow.

Despite the reassuring tone held by Sheik Hamas, the Emirate of Fujhairah has initiated a series of investments to increase its energy plan: Fujhairah is a very important centre for depositing and refuelling oil, second only to Singapore, and is to double the number of its cisterns and storage spots along its coasts in the next ten years.

It also has a new project for a new terminal for the export of GPL whereas an industrial-petrol area has been inaugurated, in line with the policy of ensuring security on travel routes and on oil rigs, hence the building of a new naval army base.

(ANSAmed).

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