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Tuesday, March 12, 2024

‎Aramco’s capital investments rose 28% in 2023: Nasser

Amin Nasser, President and CEO of Saudi Arabian Oil Co. (Saudi Aramco)

Saudi Arabian Oil Co. (Saudi Aramco ↗) saw a 28% rise in its capital investments during 2023, compared to a year earlier, said President and CEO Amin Nasser ↗.

In an online audio broadcast to review the company’s financial results, which was attended by Argaam, Nasser stressed that the company is focusing on boosting returns for its shareholders in the long term and across the various stages of the price cycle, as it increased base dividends by 4%.

He pointed out that 2023 results showed that Aramco has the highest profit among globally listed companies for the year, and the second highest profit in its history.

Nasser also expected capital investments to decline by SAR 150 billion ($40 billion) between 2024-2028, as the company will continue to deploy capital in a disciplined manner to benefit from achieving the greatest value.

He referred to the government directive to maintain Aramco’s maximum sustainable production capacity at the level of 12 million barrels per day, which will support the implementation of its main projects that are still under construction and postpone projects whose implementation has not begun yet.

Elsewhere, the CEO said that it is expected that the first phase of Dammam field development project will kick off in 2024, followed by projects to boost production from Marjan and Barri fields in 2025, Al-Dharaf field in 2026, and then the second phase of Dammam field development project in 2027.

These projects will also enhance the ability to respond quickly to market changes and maintain maximum production capacity, he noted.

Nasser stated that the expansion of refining, chemicals and marketing business inside and outside the Kingdom aims to strengthen the integration of the company’s business and reap returns in developing markets. He added the company is continuing its program to convert liquids into chemicals by increasing sales of crude oil in China.

The continued growth in gas production is expected to add about one million bpd of high-value associated liquids, said the CEO, indicating that the company continues to work to boost its gas output that is likely to grow by more than 60% by 2030, in order to meet the growing local demand.

He added that there is a growing and robust demand for refining, chemical and marketing products in 2024. Further, demand for petrochemicals advanced steadily in recent years, rising by 23% since 2019 with about three million barrels of liquids to chemicals.

Global demand for oil has been strong, as it reached its highest levels ever in 2023. It is set to remain resilient in 2024, as some independent estimates indicate that demand will range between 103.5 and 104.2 million bpd, according to the CEO.

Nasser also pointed out that Aramco still expects demand for oil to continue its rebound in the medium to long term, saying that the company is well-positioned to capitalize on this growing demand.

He highlighted that the gas market in the Kingdom is considered one of the world’s largest markets, with a demand level of up to 10 billion standard cubic feet per day. This reflects the high level of confidence in the company, in tandem with efforts to develop these materials.

Moreover, the CEO stated that Al-Hawiyah Onaizah port is the first facility of its kind to store natural gas underground in the Kingdom. It is expected to provide about two billion cubic feet per day of natural gas for re-injection into the main gas network by the end of this year.

Aramco has provided about 50% of the exploration and production sector for refining, chemicals and marketing works, which achieved sustainable value from the integration of its operations, said the top executive.

He added that the oil giant has allocated 47% of its crude oil production to refining, chemicals and marketing in 2023, a rise of 3% compared to 2022 and 9% compared to 2019 levels.

Furthermore, the company’s share of refining capacity has increased to 4.1 million barrels bpd since 2019. Its share of chemical production capacity has climbed to about 60 million tons annually.

This expansion of the company’s commercial business in refining, chemicals and marketing provides it with a competitive edge, as the average business volume reached 6.8 million bpd of crude oil and refined petroleum products, an increase of 51% over 2019 levels. This is besides 4.6 million tons of liquid chemical products, an increase of about 109% over 2019 levels, according to Nasser.

Michael Maren
Michael Maren
Former marine biologist who likes to spend as much time in the tropics as possible, due to a horrible time I once had in Alaska. Brrrr.

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