Saudi Arabia gives go-ahead for Qatar gas pipeline to Kuwait

Jan 20, 2003 01:00 AM

Regional heavyweight Saudi Arabia has given the go-ahead to a $ 2 bn pipeline project that is set to transport Qatari gas to Kuwait, passing through Saudi territorial waters. The deal was held up by the kingdom since last year.
The Saudis were reportedly angered by Qatar's refusal to restrain its highly popular Al-Jazeera satellite television, whose broadcasts are viewed as offensive by the rulers of its neighbouring Gulf monarchies. In September 2002, Riyadh recalled its ambassador from Doha and then downgraded its representation at the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit held in the Qatari capital.

Starting year end-2005 and for a 25 year period the 36-inch diameter pipeline is expected to transport up to 1.4 bn cf of natural gas from Qatar's North Field, 590 km northward to Mina Al-Ahmadi port in Kuwait.
State-run Qatar Petroleum will pump the gas through the pipeline built by a joint venture of American ExxonMobil and Gulf investors.

The Gulf emirate of Qatar occupies a tiny peninsula attached to the powerful kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The two GCC member states have only recently concluded an agreement, which put an end to a decades' old border dispute.
While Qatar sits atop the world's third largest gas reserves, its southern neighbour Saudi Arabia is home to a quarter of the world's oil reserves and is the world's largest producer of oil.

Source: Al-Bawaba
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