Riyadh: World’s largest crude exporter plans to invest in Asian refineries to ensure it has plenty of buyers in the fastest-growing region for fuel demand.
Saudi Arabian Oil Company is adding India to the list of Asian countries where it plans to build new refineries as part of a plan to almost double its global refining capacity, chief executive officer Amin Nasser said in Jubail, Saudi Arabia. Saudi Aramco, as the company is known, is also considering plants in China, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam.
The Dhahran, Saudi Arabia-based company is considering expanding its refining capacity to find new outlets for Saudi crude oil, Nasser said Tuesday in a speech during a Saudi refining conference in Jubail.
The company already owns a stake in a refinery in China’s Fujian province along with Exxon Mobil and China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation. It’s still in talks with another partner, China National Petroleum, to build a new joint-venture refinery. “Talks are good and ongoing,” he said.
Aramco has a refining capacity of around 5.4 million barrels a day now, and it will almost double that to between 8 million and 10 million, he said, without specifying a time frame for the expansion. Saudi Arabia produced 10.2 million barrels of oil a day in February, according to data.
In Saudi Arabia, the company is now considering whether to add more petrochemical plants to its existing refineries. The company is close to finishing a petrochemical plant within its joint refinery with Japan’s Sumitomo Chemical in Rabigh. Aramco is also studying a similar plan at Ras Tanura, its largest refinery in Saudi Arabia that has the capacity to refine 550,000 barrels of oil a day, Nasser said. – Bloomberg News