A specialized economic report mentions that the Gulf Arab countries subsidized energy and electricity prices with more than $100 billion dollars in 2011. According to the report carried out by the Diplomatic Center for Strategic Studies, Saudi Arabia subsidized energy prices in 2011 with $61 billion, the UAE with $22 billion, Kuwait with nearly $13 billion and Qatar with $6 billion.
The same report indicates that the Gulf countries face a real problem in the area of exploitation of renewable energy because of the high cost of producing electricity with clean energy. However, 27% of energy generated in Saudi Arabia in 2020 will come from renewable sources.
The renewable energy sector is one of the most promising sectors of the Gulf countries, but there are significant challenges that investments in such projects face such as high costs at the beginning and the inability of many countries face to secure funding for large-scale projects or the impact of weather conditions on the efficiency of renewable technology. According to the report, identifying the technology that suits the conditions of the kingdom best requires a scientific research of three years.
The success of the economic diversification of the Gulf was one of the reasons why in 2013 many initiatives, projects and programs worth billions of dollars were launched to improve energy security.