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China’s clean technology to change energy trade mode in the Middle East: experts

(People's Daily Online)    16:29, January 17, 2018

Once a country with an insatiable demand for Middle East oil, China is now making use of its advantage in clean energy technologies, changing the traditional cooperation mode between the world’s largest oil supplier and buyer.

“Traditionally, China buys oil from the Middle East to satisfy its energy needs, but that has changed in recent years. China is taking the lead in renewable energy research, and is expected to become a supplier of clean energy technologies to the Middle East,” Ibrahim Saif, former Jordanian Minister of Energy, was quoted as saying by during an interview.

Saif’s remarks come at a time when U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced his country’s National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing (OCS) Program for 2019-2024 on Sunday. The program, which proposes the largest number of lease sales in U.S. history, proposes making over 90 percent of the total OCS acreage and more than 98 percent of undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources in federal offshore areas available to consider for future exploration and development.

Competing with the Middle East, the U.S. has been trying to take more shares in China’s energy market. The country’s advanced mining technologies have led to an increase in energy exports to China, with the two nations signing a $250-billion deal that mainly focuses on crude oil, natural gas, and shale gas in 2017.

According to statistics from, the cost of solar energy has declined 70 percent thanks to China’s research and development in clean energy, while the country’s solar batteries now account for 60 percent of the international market.

“There’s no unilateral trade in the international energy sector. China’s focus on clean energy is a fundamental transformation, which may create completely new opportunities,” said Saif.

These “new opportunities” have already emerged in a mixed-energy project between China and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). According to Xinhua, Trinasolar, a major solar firm headquartered in China’s eastern province of Jiangsu, has provided equipment to the UAE green project “Dubai Sustainable City,” which consists of 500 residential villas grouped into five clusters and a 170-room hotel with 40,000 solar panels, according to Trinasolar’s website.

“China is an important country for us, in relation to the manufacturing of solar panels and reducing the overall costs of solar energy and the overall cost of renewable energy,” Al-Mazrouei, UAE Minister of Energy, told Xinhua on Tuesday.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Kou Jie, Bianji)

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