Dammam– Saudi Aramco President and CEO Amin Al Nasser said that the company would invest $300 billion in exploration and production during the coming decade, despite major challenges represented by the decline in international oil prices.
Addressing the attendees at the World Energy Congress in Istanbul on Tuesday, Nasser said that the company would develop new techniques for oil extraction in order to increase Saudi oil reserves to 900 billion barrels.
Nasser added that Saudi Aramco was optimistic that oil and gas would maintain their status as the main industries in the international energy sector. However, he stressed the need to develop non-oil industries to prepare for the shift to alternative energies.
Nasser also announced that around 5 per cent of Saudi Aramco’s share capital is expected to be sold in the Initial Public Offering (IPO) but emphasized the final decision lay with Deputy Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman.
He said that, despite the current period of low oil prices, markets had started to recover.
“We are optimistic that the markets started to recover and we expect them to recover even more in 2017,” he said, adding that the year 2018 will be almost just right [for the IPO].
While acknowledging that “the [industry] environment has never been more challenging or more dynamic”, Nasser said he was concerned over the long-term effects of companies delaying investments due to the low oil price.
“I fear supply growth will fall behind demand over time,” he said. “We must continue making adequate and timely investment.”
Meanwhile, Saudi Aramco signed memoranda of understanding (MoU) on Tuesday with 18 Turkish firms primarily in construction, power generation and related services, enabling them to bid for Aramco projects in the years ahead, which would further strengthen Saudi-Turkish trade ties.
“The MoUs will help further the development of business opportunities between the two countries and we look forward to working with Turkish firms on future projects,” Nasser said in a statement.