Blackrock CEO says high probability of oil reaching $100/barrel: Saudi Arabia’s FII

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Larry Fink, chief executive of the world’s largest asset manager BlackRock, said that there is a high probability of oil reaching $100 a barrel, as he addressed the Future Investment Initiative (FII) conference in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday.

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Brent crude was down 28 cents at $85.71 a barrel by Tuesday morning, reversing gains from earlier in the day but still close to multi-year highs.

Fink, who was speaking at the fifth edition of FII in Riyadh, also called for more collaboration between the public and private sectors to tackle global challenges such as climate change.

“(By) bringing public and private sector together large global change can be made,” he told the forum.

He said while private capital is abundant in reducing climate emissions, he said better foundations and frameworks are needed to better implement strategies.

A shift in societal attitudes is also needed to address climate change, he said.

“The problem is not public companies, the problem is moving societies forward,” he said, addressing a panel discussion entitled ‘The Board of Changemakers: Investing for Impact.”

He said if global leaders are “truly going to improve humanity,” societies need to change too, saying companies cannot be the “environmental police” in solely adopting green practices and reducing carbon emissions.

Climate change, global & economic recovery

The United Arab Emirates’ Khaldoon Khalifa al-Mubarak, CEO & Managing Director of Mubadala Investment Company, addressed three huge challenges facing society in a post-COVID world: climate change, disparity in global recovery, and economic recovery.

He said the UAE has set a net zero goal by 2050 but stressed that climate change is a global issue.

“The UAE’s perspective to commit to net zero to 2050 shows intent,” he said. “Now it is about ‘walking the walk.’”

“But it is not just about the West, it is not just about the East, it is about the whole world.”

“We have to solve it by working together, it’s a responsibility that we all have to take on.”

He said Mubadala began investing in clean energy goals in 2006 and has since invested $20 billion into the sector.

“It has proven to be a healthy investment,” he said.”

He too spoke about the importance of public and private partnerships – pointing to COVID-19 as a case-study of what can be achieved through cross sector collaboration.

Within 12 months, through public and private partnerships, the world had a global solution to a global problem, he said.

“We went from science to production and delivery of vaccines in less than 12 months,” he said.

“That is remarkable. That’s a blueprint. It shows what we are able to deliver together.”

Also speaking at the panel discussion was Goldman Sachs Chief Executive David Solomon who said there is a risk of higher inflation and slower growth globally post-pandemic.

There will be consequences for having accommodative monetary policy for a long time, Solomon said.

The fifth edition of FII, Saudi Arabia’s annual investment forum, is taking place between October 26 to 28 this year in the Kingdom’s capital Riyadh under the theme of ‘Invest in Humanity.’

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