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BMI View: MENA's power sector is relatively developed, with many markets having robust power project
pipelines - as governments endeavour to meet pent-up power demand. Egypt will be a key driver of this
growth as the country meets surging power demand, while regional oil exporters will rationalise their
power sector spending in light of falling oil prices.
- Lower oil prices will have a differing impact on the countries in the MENA region as net importers and
net exporters of oil adjust to the new price environment. For the large oil exporting economies, this will
entail rationalised infrastructure spending plans. We do stress that oil exporters such as Saudi Arabia,
UAE and Kuwait hold substantial foreign reserves and fiscal buffers - meaning that infrastructure
spending will remain elevated and government-driven.
- The GCC markets maintain their outperformance in our MENA RRI, owing to continued significant
government investment - despite ongoing fiscal consolidation in the face of low oil prices - and their
more stable investment environments. Our newly expanded regional coverage has resulted in Iraq
and Lebanon entering the bottom of the ranking tables, a position we expect them to maintain over
coming quarters, due to the sizeable risks facing prospective investors
- Momentum behind gas projects in the Middle East has accelerated under low oil prices as countries eye
gas to boost domestic power generation and as a means of diversifying exports.
- Renewables capacity will account for only a small fraction of electricity generation in the MENA region
over our 10-year forecast period due to heavy reliance on accessible and relatively economic gas- and oilfired
generation in major markets. Amid the muted outlook for growth we do highlight some investment
bright spots - specifically the UAE, Morocco and potentially Egypt.