OPEC Member Country Kuwait pledges US $500m aid package to USA, in wake of Hurricane Katrina

No 13/2005
Vienna, Austria
04 Sep 2005

OPEC Member Country Kuwait has pledged an aid package of US $500 million to the United States of America, in the wake of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina last week.

The emergency aid will include both humanitarian and petroleum supplies, in particular, gasoline, and a special session of the country’s Parliament, now in summer recess, will be convened to approve the package.

Kuwait’s Energy Minister, who is also President of the OPEC Conference, His Excellency Sheikh Ahmad Fahad Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, confirmed today that this action was in line with his statement on Friday (2 September) that he was in consultations with his counterparts in other Member Countries, to identify what additional measures could be taken to help ease the severe problems caused by the hurricane.

He added that, in his capacity as Kuwait’s Energy Minister, he was in touch with the US authorities to determine how best their needs could be met.

He expressed the hope that such actions by producers, as well as by other nations, would make an important contribution towards relieving the human suffering and towards easing the severe problems created by the hurricane to production and refining facilities, which had led to shortages of supplies in the region, with repercussions further afield in the international energy sector.

Other OPEC Member Countries have also made offers of assistance to the USA. They include Qatar, which today pledged $100m of humanitarian assistance, as well as Indonesia, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela.

Moreover, it will be recalled that the Saudi Arabian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, HE Ali I. Naimi, last week said that, “to the extent that markets are concerned about the impact of Hurricane Katrina on the availability of crude oil supply, Saudi Arabia stands ready to increase oil production immediately to 11 million barrels a day and sustain that level to replace any shortages in the crude oil market.”