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Mohamed bin Zayed launches Abu Dhabi powerhouse to develop world-leading portfolio in clean energy

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ABU DHABI, 1st December, 2021 (WAM) — His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, announced on Wednesday a global clean energy powerhouse intended to spearhead the drive to net-zero carbon by 2050.

Consolidating their combined efforts in renewable energy and green hydrogen, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC (TAQA), Mubadala Investment Company (Mubadala) and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) will partner under the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) brand.

H.H. Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed highlighted how the UAE is embracing the energy transition as it advances pragmatic and innovative solutions to secure a lower carbon future, paving the way for the nation to deliver on its ‘Net-Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative’.

The agreement signing, in the UAE Pavilion at EXPO 2020 Dubai, was witnessed by H.H. Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, along with H.H. Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council; H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs; H.H. Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Office; H.H. Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of Crown Prince Court.

Signatories were Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and Managing Director and Group CEO of ADNOC; Khaldoun Khalifa Al Mubarak, Managing Director and Group Chief Executive Officer of Mubadala Investment Company; and Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi, CEO of ADQ and Chairman of TAQA.

The partnership between three Abu Dhabi champions will have a combined current, committed, and exclusive capacity of over 23 Gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy, with the expectation of reaching well over 50GW total capacity by 2030. Upon completion of this transaction, the expanded Masdar entity will become one of the largest clean energy companies of its kind and be well positioned to lead the industry on a global scale.

Wednesday’s announcement consolidates the efforts of all three partners, combining their renewable energy and green hydrogen portfolios into Masdar, leveraging the existing clean energy pioneer’s strong international legacy and brand identity. The new Masdar partnership builds on the creation in January 2021 of the Abu Dhabi Hydrogen Alliance, comprised of Mubadala, ADNOC and ADQ (TAQA’s majority shareholder) and the launch on 17th November 2021 of a new global renewable energy venture between ADNOC and TAQA. Collectively, the partners will supercharge Masdar’s growth and expansion, with each shareholder playing a key role.

As the United Arab Emirates prepares to host COP28 in 2023, this strategic partnership positions Abu Dhabi and the UAE at the forefront of the energy transition. The powerful new combination will further drive de-carbonisation of power across local and international markets, while accelerating the UAE’s path towards net-zero carbon by 2050 and cementing its leading global role in green hydrogen.

On this occasion, Dr. Sultan Al Jaber commented, "As the UAE celebrates its Jubilee, today’s historic collaboration between three Abu Dhabi powerhouses firmly places ADNOC at the forefront of the global energy transition and marks our entry into the international clean energy space. Through our direct interest in Masdar, and in close collaboration with our partners, ADNOC will further capitalise on the many exciting local and international renewable energy and hydrogen opportunities.

"Since our nation’s wise leadership founded Masdar 15 years ago, the company has established itself as a global pioneer across the clean energy and sustainability landscape. This bold and forward-looking strategic partnership, will bolster Masdar’s position both locally and globally, and is yet another example of how ADNOC has successfully developed a national and international partnership model, through smart, creative and innovative approaches that are creating additional value and driving sustainable growth for Abu Dhabi and the UAE."

As an early pioneer in the emerging market for hydrogen and its carrier fuels, ADNOC has ambitious plans to grow domestic and international hydrogen value chains, leveraging its trading capabilities, existing infrastructure and logistics.

For his side, Khaldoun Al Mubarak said, "Today marks the start of a new chapter for our clean energy champion, Masdar. Fifteen years ago, Mubadala established Masdar out of our conviction that innovation can drive sustainable economic growth while safeguarding the future of the planet. Masdar is a true ‘Made-in-the-UAE’ success story that reflects our long-term strategy."

"Responding to the mounting challenges of a changing climate requires that we continue to look for innovative ways to create clean energy. With partnerships at the heart of Mubadala’s investment philosophy, this joint venture with Abu Dhabi’s energy leaders supports the UAE’s vision as a global leader in climate action. We look forward to working with ADNOC and TAQA to support Masdar’s continued growth and the company’s journey in finding new solutions to our climate challenges."

Mohamed Alsuwaidi said, "TAQA’s strategy is to be a champion of low carbon power and water. By taking a controlling stake in Masdar’s renewable energy business and working in partnership with ADNOC and Mubadala we have created a path to grow to over 50GW of renewable capacity by 2030, making us the largest player in the MENA region and one of the leading global contributors to renewable power generation. This clean power capability and the opportunity to tap into the expertise in this partnership will also enable us to become a world leader in green hydrogen. We will be a true national champion for the UAE in developing clean energy solutions at home and around the world."

The new partnership envisions a comprehensive focus on two key areas: renewable energy, and green hydrogen. Dr. Sultan Al Jaber will remain Chairman of the expanded Masdar entity that will cover both renewables and green hydrogen business areas.

It is planned that TAQA will take the leading role with a 43 percent shareholding in Masdar’s renewable energy business, with Mubadala retaining 33 percent and ADNOC holding 24 percent. Meanwhile, ADNOC will take the leading role with a 43 percent shareholding in Masdar’s green hydrogen business, with Mubadala holding 33 percent and TAQA 24 percent respectively.

The partnership envisages parties entering into detailed agreements as well as completion of necessary transaction requirements, including obtaining relevant third party and regulatory approvals.

Mubadala established Masdar in 2006 to extend the UAE’s leadership role in the global energy sector, while helping to drive the nation’s economic diversification and climate action agenda. Today, the company is active in more than 35 countries across six continents and has developed and invested in projects worldwide worth nearly $20 billion. Masdar City, Abu Dhabi’s flagship sustainable urban development, will continue to remain under Mubadala’s ownership.

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Stampede at Liberian church gathering kills 29

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A stampede has killed at least 29 people at a religious event in the suburbs of the Liberian capital Monrovia, police said on Thursday.

Those who died from the incident include 11 children and a pregnant woman.

The bodies have been taken to the morgue of Redemption Hospital, close to where the incident occurred in a beach area called New Kru Town.

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The stampede erupted when a gang of thugs armed with knives attacked some of the hundreds attending the ceremony at about 9 p.m. on Wednesday night, police spokesman Moses Carter told The Associated Press.

One person has been arrested, he said.

Local media said it was a Christian prayer gathering, known in Liberia as a “crusade,” held in a football field.

Witness Emmanuel Gray, 26, told AFP he heard “heavy noise” towards the end and saw several dead bodies.

Street gangs have become an increasing problem in Monrovia and other Liberian cities in recent years, according to residents.

President George Weah was expected to visit the scene Thursday, according to Liberian media reports.

Liberia, Africa’s oldest republic, is an impoverished country that is still recovering after back-to-back civil wars between 1989-2003, as well as the 2014-2016 West Africa Ebola epidemic.

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US approves ballistic requests to ship US weapons to Ukraine

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The US has approved requests by Baltic nations to ship US-made weapons to Ukraine amid fears of a Russian invasion, officials said Thursday.

A State Department official in Berlin, where Secretary of State Antony Blinken was holding talks on Ukraine, said the US was “expediting authorized transfers of US-origin equipment from other allies.”

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“European allies have what they need to move forward on additional security assistance (to) Ukraine in the coming days and weeks,” the official said.

A source familiar with the authorisations said the approval was for urgent requests by Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to assist Ukraine, a fellow former Soviet republic.

The exact amounts and types of weapons were not specified, but the Baltic nations’ arsenals include Javelins, portable missiles capable of destroying tanks.

Tens of thousands of Russian troops, along with tanks and artillery, have been deployed near the Ukrainian border since late last year, rattling the three Baltic nations, which are members of NATO.

President Joe Biden’s administration since last year has approved $650 million in weapons to Ukraine, $200 million of it last month amid fears of war.

While the Biden administration boasts that the shipments are the most ever by the US, Ukraine has voiced hope for military supplies as quickly as possible, with shipments from nearby countries especially valuable.

Britain has also rushed to support Ukraine, announcing on Monday that it was sending anti-tank weapons.

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Bomb blast in Pakistan’s Lahore kills two, injures 16

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At least two people were killed and 16 injured Thursday by a bomb blast in a busy shopping district of the Pakistani city of Lahore, police said.

“Initial investigations show that it was a time-controlled device on a motorbike which was the cause of the blast,” Rana Arif, spokesman for Lahore police, told AFP.

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