Abu Dhabi’s state fund is looking to expand its energy investments, with $5 billion spent in the past few months in nations that can offer low costs such as the U.S., according to the head of Mubadala Investment Co.’s oil and chemicals projects.
“If you think about the low cost environment, the U.S. ranks very high because of the feedstock,” Musabbeh Al Kaabi, the chief executive officer overseeing Mubadala’s petroleum and petrochemicals, said in an interview in Abu Dhabi. “The natural gas is relatively attractive and the expansion in the petchem in the U.S. is big.”
The current oil price is good for oil and gas investment, Al Kaabi said earlier in an interview on Bloomberg TV from Abu Dhabi where hundreds of energy executives were meeting at a conference. Oil demand is “exceeding our expectation,” he said. In recent months, Mubadala has spent $1.7 billion on a chemicals joint venture in the U.S. with Borealis AG and Total SA, and an additional $2.1 billion on chemicals in Louisiana. It’s also expanding in Vietnam.
Brent crude, a global benchmark, has climbed the past five consecutive weeks, and is trading close to the highest in two years. The January contract traded at $63.43 a barrel at 2:49 p.m. in London.
Mubadala manages about $125 billion in assets after the merger this year of two state investment companies with holdings from aerospace to energy to infrastructure. The government-owned investment vehicle is reviewing its portfolio as a step toward the possible sale of some businesses or holdings, people familiar with the matter said earlier this month.