Saudi Aramco, Total sign MoU for 'giant' $5bn petchems complex at Jubail

Katrina Barker
April 12, 2018

Saudi Aramco, the world's largest oil producer, on Wednesday signed an agreement to pick up 50 per cent stake in a planned United States dollars 44-billion refinery-cum-petrochemical project in Maharashtra, a move that will give it an assured customer for additional 30 million tonnes of its crude oil.

The refinery at Ratnagiri in Maharashtra will be handle up to 1.2 million barrels of oil a day, the Saudi company said in a statement after signing a memorandum of understanding with Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum Corporation and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation.

Saudi Aramco, the world's largest producer of crude oil, has made a decision to buy a 50-percent stake in a $44-billion Indian oil refinery, officials said Wednesday. In a separate project - Aramco's 300,000 barrel-a-day refinery project with state-owned China North Industries Group Corp., or Norinco, the company may build a new plant or expand an existing small refinery, he said.

Saudi Arabia is one of the world's top three oil producers with Russian Federation and the United States, while Aramco is the biggest company putting oil on the world market now awash with product.

Aramco wants to develop its downstream business and use crude oil as a petrochemicals feedstock, Kallanish Energy reports.

Saudi Aramco president and CEO, Amin H Nasser, said the signing of MoU marks a significant development in India's oil and gas sector, adding that participation in the mega project will give Saudi Aramco a bigger role in India's energy supply beyond its current role as crude oil supplier.

The potential partnership in India would be an extension of Aramco's strategy to lock up market share by investing in refineries in Asia, the region that's driving global oil demand growth.

The complex will be integrated downstream of the SATORP refinery, a joint venture between Saudi Aramco (62,5%) and Total (37,5%) in Jubail, in a move created to fully exploit operational synergies.

From a technical and regulatory perspective Saudi Arabia's stock exchange is capable of handling the planned Saudi Aramco initial public offer alone if necessary, according to Chief Executive Officer of the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul) Khalid al-Hussan. "We're very much interested in retail", he said. We went through a part of the process, including the due diligence, but due to political and legal reasons that process was discontinued.

"We are not desperate for listing".

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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