Exclusive: Aramco eyes Qingdao refinery stake

Saudi Aramco CEO reveals firm is in discussions with Sinopec

Khalid Al-Falih, CEO of Saudi Aramco
Khalid Al-Falih, CEO of Saudi Aramco

Saudi Aramco is in talks with Sinopec to take a stake in the company’s Qingdao refinery in China, according to Khalid Al-Falih, CEO of Saudi Aramco.

“We have been in talks with Sinopec to take part of the Qingdao refinery, and we continue those discussions with Sinopec,” Al-Fallih told ArabianOilandGas.com on the sidelines of the inauguration of PetroRabigh.

Al-Falih said Aramco remains committed to the Ras Tanura refinery complex and will not delay its completion.

“We have not made a decision to delay the project,” he said. “We have started a $1.2bn study to do the engineering studies to determine the final cost of the project,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sinopec said last week that it will buy about 1 million barrels per day of crude from Saudi Arabia next year, a volume nearly 30% above the current rate, to feed expanding refining capacities.

The Asian refiner aims to process 205 million tonnes of crude in 2010, or 4.1 million bpd, its president Wang Tianpu said. The target is 14% higher than the average rate of 3.59 million bpd for the first three quarters of this year.

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