Abu Dhabi National Energy (TAQA), the United Arab Emirates state-owned oil exploration company, sold its 7 percent share of Tesla Motors. TAQA made a tidy $113 million profit and then made its portfolio a tad less diverse by investing the money in a northern Iraq power plant.

TAQA took advantage of Tesla’s recent stock rally, the value of which has doubled since the energy company received the automaker’s shares. The high end electric vehicle manufacturer says it is on target to reach profitability next year, but nevertheless TAQA had decided Tesla was not a core investment.

For TAQA and Abu Dhabi, the stock’s sale was a very quick buck. TAQA had only had the 7 million shares of stock, which was 7 percent of Tesla’s equity, since December 2010. But for Abu Dhabi, which has 94 percent of the UAE’s oil reserves and manages over half of the country’s GDP, the future for now is investing in energy projects throughout the Middle East. The emirate is not exactly exiting its investments in the automobile industry, however; it is still the largest shareholder in Daimler via one of its sovereign wealth funds.

Observers who wonder if this is a sign that the UAE and other Gulf countries are not confident about clean technology and clean energy investments are reading too much in this relatively small transaction. Abu Dhabi is still moving forward on its Masdar City complex, a futuristic zero-carbon and zero-waste city to which Siemens will relocate its Middle East headquarters. A $600 million solar power plant is due to launch later this year. Nearby, glitzy Dubai is mulling the purchase of solar from panels installed on the city’s office buildings and houses. With nearby Qatar investing in everything from solar to smart grid technologies and even Saudi Arabia building LEED-certified projects, the future of green technology and renewable energy in the Middle East, quite counterintuitively considering the importance of the region’s oil and gas sector, is still bright.

Meanwhile Tesla surges ahead with new models and new showrooms.

Published earlier this morning on Triple Pundit.

Photo courtesy Wikipedia (Tumbenhaur).

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he specializes in social media consulting and strategic communications. A journalist and writer since 2009, his work has appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. Areas of interest include the <a Middle East, sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (Leon Kaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). Since 2013, he has spent much of his time in Abu Dhabi, UAE, working with Masdar, the emirate's renewable energy company. He lives in Fresno, California.