For years now the likes of the UAE and Saudi Arabia have been warning that upstream investment is insufficient and risks paving the way for a future supply crunch. In its World Energy Investment 2021 report, the IEA lays bare how investment patterns are changing. In 2015, the Majors invested around $140bn in the upstream, with Middle East NOCs investing less than $40bn. For 2021, the Majors are expected to invest around $70bn, while the Middle East NOCs are set to invest slightly more than $40bn.

“Upstream spending by the Majors as a group has traditionally been well above the levels from their peers in the Middle East, Russia and China; this is no longer the case” says the IEA. And with IOCs under increasing pressure to decarbonise, if NOCs want more industry investment they will have to do it themselves. Saudi Arabia (MEES, 4 June) and the UAE are doing just that (MEES, 27 November 2020). (CONTINUED - 151 WORDS)