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Jonathan Gorvett

Jonathan Gorvett is a journalist, writer and analyst who specialises in Middle Eastern affairs and possesses an in-depth knowledge of countries including Qatar, the UAE, Oman, Saudi Arabia and Turkey

Jonathan Gorvett
Crypto miners have been drawn to the Gulf for its low electricity costs and comparatively unrestricted land use rules

Crypto miners see ‘enormous potential’ in the Gulf

With cryptocurrencies edging up again after last weekend’s “halving” – in which the rewards Bitcoin miners get for solving problems is cut in two to maintain scarcity – these are heady days for holders of Bitcoin and other virtual currencies. Bitcoin miners have been attracted to the Gulf by cheap electricity and established infrastructure.   “GCC […]

US company Albemarle controls 20% of the world's lithium market but Gulf companies have their sights set on production too

Lithium’s highs and lows – and what they mean for the Gulf

For one of the world’s most critical minerals, the past two years have been the best of times and the worst of times. First, lithium prices shot skywards, hitting around $80,000 per metric tonne in 2022 amid fears that global supply would not meet demand. Then, in just a year, the soft, silvery-white metal lost […]

Workers at a uranium mine in Kazakhstan, which produces 43 percent of the world's total

Uranium prices rise with demand for nuclear power

Barakah in the UAE, Dabaa in Egypt, Bushehr in Iran and Akkuyu in Turkey. Nuclear energy is now seen by many countries as central to emissions reduction. It is little surprise then that demand for feedstock – mainly uranium – has been spiking. Prices for the mineral, which is critical to the production of nuclear power […]

There are many steps from mining iron ore to a car rolling off the production line but Saudi Arabia plans to cover them all car being made manufacturing car EV electric vehicle

Saudi Arabia joins the dots from minerals to manufacturing

Consider for a moment how many different steps there are between digging a lump of iron ore out of the ground in Mauritania and pressing the starter button on a new electric vehicle (EV) in Riyadh. The ore must be mined, concentrated, combined with other elements, put through a furnace, a casting machine, cold- or […]

Steel production in the Gulf produces less emissions than traditional coal-fired furnaces used in other regions

Gulf steel has a keen edge on Chinese and Indian rivals

While the Gulf is currently a minor player on the global steel-making stage, economic diversification and the energy transition may be about to change all that. As the world seeks to decarbonise, Gulf steel makers have a head start, already producing lower-carbon steel than global sector leaders China and India. The region’s ample supplies of […]

Mumbai aluminium smelting

Aluminium: waiting for the rise in demand

With global aluminium prices soft and demand currently waning, the announcement last month of the launch of Kings Aluminium Industries’ AED750 million ($204 million) manufacturing and recycling plant in Abu Dhabi may have seemed unfortunately timed. However, “long term” has always been the name of the game with this lightweight metal, as giant, billion-dollar smelters […]

A worker checks a shipment of copper in Valparaiso, Chile, the world's largest copper producer; rising prices and tighter supply may encourage the Middle East to ramp up its own production

Middle East craves a copper-bottomed future

While recent weeks have seen some major ups and downs in the price of copper, for many old hands in the sector this is nothing new. “The one sure thing in copper,” Carlos Risopatron, director of economics and environment at the International Copper Study Group, tells AGBI, “is that you can always rely on volatility.” […]

Phosphate mining in Morocco

Future is rosy for Mena phosphate producers

With Morocco and Saudi Arabia now holding the bulk of the world’s high-quality, accessible phosphate rock reserves, the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region is a major centre for the phosphate mining industry’s future growth, analysts say. Morocco alone holds around 70 percent of the world’s total reserves of phosphate rock, the raw material […]

Gulf refinery upgrade programme

Gulf invests in major oil refinery upgrade programme

Gulf states are expanding their oil refining capacity through a series of massive upgrades, at the same time as they drive towards net zero and seek to move away from petroleum and natural gas. The apparent contradiction is, however, only apparent.  From Az-Zour in Kuwait to Duqm in Oman, the refinery upgrades are central to […]

green hydrogen oman

Oman takes green hydrogen gamble

Sometimes it takes a country. Oman is dedicating an area the size of Slovakia to solar power projects to produce green hydrogen – gas produced entirely from renewable sources. On June 1 Salim bin Nasser Al Aufi, minister of energy and minerals, signed $20 billion of contracts with partners including BP, Shell and the newly […]

Kuwait economy IMF

Kuwait PM’s in-tray: public debt and budget reform

Since Kuwait’s new government took office at the start of June, it has provided Kuwaitis – and many international investors – with much to consider. After just six weeks in office, Prime Minister Sheikh Ahmad Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Sabah’s administration announced a four-year programme featuring 107 major projects. These include completion of Kuwait’s stretch of the […]

Bahrain oil gas

Bahrain reboots oil and gas to reduce debt and CO2

Bahrain is taking steps to address economic challenges by relaunching its oil and gas holding company as Bapco Energies, with a focus on greater efficiencies and a low-carbon future. The island kingdom’s sovereign rating is one of only two sub-investment grade ratings in the Gulf – with challenges ranging from ageing domestic oil fields to […]