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Ali Al Janabi Country chairman, Shell Group of Companies Iraq & UAE

UAE - Energy & Mining

Ali Al Janabi

Country Chairman, Shell Group of Companies Iraq & UAE


Ali Al Janabi is the Country Chairman of Shell Group of Companies in the UAE and Iraq. He is accountable for providing governance and support for joint ventures formed between Shell and UAE partners and also represents the Royal Dutch Shell Group to the government of the UAE. Al Janabi started his career with Taylor Wood and had worked for Halliburton and Goldman Sachs, and joined Shell in 2001. He is a graduate of Imperial College London where he obtained a master’s of engineering degree in civil and environmental engineering and a master’s degree in strategy and finance from Kingston Business School. Al Janabi also holds a Financial Services Authority Qualification in financial regulation and derivatives.

"We are going through a significant decarbonization of our existing assets."
With a strong presence in the UAE in terms of projects and technology, Shell remains closely aligned to the country’s vision and decarbonization goals.
How important is the UAE is for the company’s operations?

Shell has had an important and long history with the UAE, having been here for over 82 years. We are honored, privileged, and proud of that relationship. Today, we are not just involved in the upstream sector but also in the midstream/integrated gas, with ADNOC Gas Processing. We are also an LNG supplier to the UAE in terms of supply and security. We play an important role in supplying current energy needs; as well, there is the rest of our suite. We have a chemicals business, a lubricants business, a marine business, and a bitumen business. We are pleased to continue to play an important role in Shell Bitumen, from the Formula One track in Abu Dhabi, to Dubai Airports and the Dubai World Trade Center. We also have another set of businesses. We have a regional business for supply and trading that covers products, crude, LNG, and chemicals. We move large volumes to and from the region. In addition, we have a strong projects and technology presence here, which services both Shell projects as well as ADNOC, even though it is a non-Shell project. The business covers everything from carbon capture and licensing technologies to sulfur removal technology and a catalyst business that supports refineries. We have over 400 staff members in the UAE and are firmly committed to the Emirate. We launched our strategy for powering progress a few years ago. Shell has the largest retail outlet in the world, and it supplies many of the major global corporations, which is the B2B side. We supply everyone, from the likes of construction companies to airlines and logistics and industrials. We want to build on that strategy of more and cleaner energy. We are closely aligned with the Paris Accord. That is why we have set our own net zero and net carbon ambitions for 2050 or even sooner.

What primary sectors have you defined?

We are looking to decarbonize roads and construction, aviation, trading and supply, and forestry and agriculture. We now have a hub with our own supply chain and are working on a relationship to get them to start decarbonizing the services they provide us. In 2020, we launched the sustainability and carbon offsets program in Shell. Here in the UAE, we have done a carbon-neutral LPG cargo. The first one came out in Abu Dhabi this year, the first carbon-neutral LPG cargo that we sold. We have several ways to offset consumers’ carbon footprints, either through carbon capture, for which we have live projects in Canada and recently announced a joint venture in Norway with a few more in the pipeline, or through a nature-based solution, such as reforestation. We have a nature-based solution looking at it as well as a team that does carbon capture via technologies.

The UAE’s primary goals are to diversify, though downstream activities often emit more carbon. How is Shell engaging with this issue?

We are going through a significant decarbonization of our existing assets. We can see what we are doing in the Pernis refinery where we are integrating green hydrogen. This is a tricky issue. We have tried to do this ourselves in Rotterdam. We found out where the anchor demand would be and started our chemicals business. We started to refine them in the Pernis refinery, which needs a green energy supply. On the back of that, we have been asked for a 200-MW electrolyzer using wind energy. That is the first phase. This is not the end phase, though it will build on that to look at decarbonizing other sectors and customers as well. That is likely what the UAE needs to think about for its next wave of projects, which ADNOC and others are already considering. We currently support ADNOC, and it has declared its goals to get to 5 million tons of carbon capture a year from the current 800,000. I am honored that we are supporting ADNOC’s goals via Shell technology and engineering.



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