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Saudi Aramco expands the largest United States refinery

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Prince Mohammed bin Salman- Credit Flickr  Алексей М

"This project illustrates our strategy of maximizing the integration of our large refining and petrochemical platforms and of expanding our petrochemical operations from a low-priced feedstock, to take advantage of the fast growing Asian polymer market", said Patrick Pouyanne, the chairman and chief executive of Total.

Khalid Al-Falih, minister of energy, industry and mineral resources in Saudi Arabia, said that an worldwide oil company has expressed interest in being part of the project but did not specify which in a media briefing.

Saudi Arabia was the biggest oil supplier to India till 2016-17 fiscal year, but slipped behind Iraq last fiscal.

Asked about Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation looking to extending a short-term pact to curb oil supplies with a view to check prices, he said, "We believe that whatever we are doing is part of long-term responsibility".

According to the partners, the refinery will be created to process 1.2 million barrels of crude oil per day to produce a variety of refined petroleum products like petrol and diesel that are expected to be compliant with BS-VI fuel efficiency norms.

Indian Oil, Bharat Petroleum and Hindustan Petroleum have set up a joint venture for the deal with Aramco, Ratnagiri Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd. "We want to be consumer-facing".

"Retail is very important".

The kingdom's state-owned crude producer is joining with U.K. oilfield-services firm TechnipFMC Plc to assess the potential for producing ethylene, a key component in plastics, Saudi Aramco's Motiva Enterprises LLC unit said in a statement Saturday.

Aramco, at a later date, plans to dilute some of its 50 per cent equity stake in the 60 million tonne-a-year refinery project in favour of another strategic investor, visiting Saudi Oil Minister Khalid Al-Falih told reporters here. "We will only list when the market is right", he said.

India has a refining capacity of 232.066 million tonnes, which exceeded the demand of 194.2 million tonnes in 2016-17 fiscal.

The French agreement is part of a growing list at Saudi Aramco.

Already, the boom has spurred billions of dollars of investments in Gulf Coast petrochemicals operations, which have begun to replace traditional refining as a driver of crude oil demand.

Chinese customs data showed imports from Saudi Arabia rose only 2.3 percent on 2017 from the previous year, below the overall increase of 10.2 percent. In 2016, the country beat Japan as the world's third-largest oil consumer after the USA and China.

Nasser said he was not anxious by rising supplies from regional rivals to India.

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