Saudi energy min calls for flexibility in ‘complicated’ energy transition

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RIYADH, Jan 12 (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said on Wednesday that the world needed more flexiblity as the transition to clean energy is “complicated”, adding that the kingdom would develop its nuclear programme to take advantage of uranium resources.

“We should not forfeit energy security for the sake of a publicity stunt”, said Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman al-Saud, speaking at a mining conference in Saudi Arabia. “The transition needs to be a well-thought of transition.”

The world’s top oil exporter has said it wants to tap nulcear technology and use nuclear power to diversify its energy mix.

“Let me be very specific about it, we do have a huge amount of uranium resources that we would like to exploit and we will be doing it in the most transparent way, we will be bringing in partners,” the minister said, adding that Saudi Arabia would be manufacturing and developing uranium.

Prince Abdulaziz also said that Saudi Arabia would be publishing its energy strategy.

Saudi Arabia Mining Co. (Ma’aden), the gulf’s largest miner, would also be creating a subsidiary for investments abroad.

“We have the foresight to put together through our champion in minerals, Ma’aden, a subsidiary company that will be developed very soon to venture abroad with partners.”

(Reporting by Aziz El Yakoubi, additional reporting by Doyinsola Oladipo and Maha El Dahan, writing by Maha El Dahan Editing by Louise Heavens)

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