The Saudi oil giant, Saudi Aramco, which recently went public, has struck a deal with an American fund that will allow it to pocket as much as $ 12.4 billion. This agreement is a breath of fresh air for Riyadh in these times of crude oil crisis.
The world’s leading oil exporter has just signed an agreement with an American consortium for the installation of an oil pipeline network, but the names of the companies forming the consortium have not been revealed.
The contract includes the creation of a company, named Aramco Oil Pipelines Company, which will be owned 49% by the American fund EIG Global Energy Partners and 51% for Aramco. A commercial operation that will put Riyadh’s accounts afloat at a time when Saudi Arabia relies mainly on its gross revenues to boost its economy.
But faced with a 44.4% drop in net profit in 2020, to $ 49 billion due to falling crude prices and the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, the country found itself in a tight spot. .
The agreement to use its pipeline network “strengthens Aramco’s catalytic role in attracting significant foreign investment to the kingdom,” the company said in a statement. He added that the agreement on the pipeline network is “one of the most important agreements on oil infrastructure in the world”.
Saudi Arabia, which seeks to diversify its economy, and attract foreign investment, and to cut with its traditional image, is betting on this contract which will certainly give assurances to potential investors.
Aramco, which will rake in $ 12.4 billion through this operation, will in return have to lease its pipeline network for 25 years, and it will retain “full ownership and control” of the network, the statement added.
“We are capitalizing on new opportunities strategically in line with the Shareek investment program,” said Aramco CEO Amin Nasser, quoted in the statement, hailing a “major transaction” that will “maximize returns for investors. shareholders ”.