The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman of Saudi Arabia, has launched a number of giant oil projects, worth a total of SR160 billion, belonging to Saudi Aramco at a colourful ceremony held at the company’s headquarters in Dhahran. He also inaugurated the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture or Ithra, a stunning addition to the skyline of the Eastern Province, Saudi Gazette newspaper reported.
Upon arrival at the Oil Supply Planning and Scheduling (OSPAS) Center of Saudi Aramco in Dhahran, the King was received by Prince Saud bin Naif, Emir of the Eastern Province, Prince Faisal bin Turki, adviser at the ministry of energy, industry and mineral resources, Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Khalid Al-Faleh, and Saudi Aramco’s President and CEO Amin Al-Nasser.
Speaking on the occasion, Aramco chief Amin Al-Nasser explained the pivotal role being played by the oil giant in the Kingdom’s growth, development and prosperity. He said the company employs more than 66,000 people, half of whom young Saudis who are building the future Aramco.
The King watched a video presentation on the history of Saudi Aramco. Then, a group of young Saudis presented crystal stones to the King, symbolizing each of the new projects. The King launched the mega oil projects with lifting the joystick for energy to flow from various production plants with a total production capacity about 3 million barrels per day.
The King then interacted through video conferencing with a group of young Saudi employees at each of the newly-opened facilities – Manifa oilfield, the Wasit gas plant, Khurais oilfield and Shaybah oilfield and liquefied gas plants in Empty Quarter (Rub Al-Khali).
King Salman later visited the headquarters of King Abdulaziz Centre for World Culture where he was received by Crown Prince Muhammad bin Naif, Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior. The King watched a collection of photos of King Abdul Aziz and a replica of the centre.
Saudi Aramco chose to build the centre near the Prosperity Well, the Kingdom’s first commercial oil well, signaling the centre’s objective of developing an even greater source of wealth.
Oil refining capacity
The King also inaugurated an exhibition titled ‘Trade Routes in the Arabian Peninsula: Archeological Masterpieces of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia through the Ages’, which was organised by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH).
Meanwhile, a top official has said that Saudi Aramco’s oil refining capacity is set to rise to 8 to 10 million barrels per day (bpd) from more than 5 million bpd currently by 2030. He said that Saudi Aramco aims to almost triple its chemicals production to 34 million metric tons per year by 2030.
“In chemicals, our equity capacity, across our global operations, is expected to grow from 12 million metric tons per year to 34 million over the same period,” Abdulaziz Al-Judaimi, the company’s business line head for downstream, said.
Developing petrochemicals is part of the Saudi Vision 2030 economic reform plan announced this year which aims to diversify the economy away from oil.
Aramco has been integrating its refineries with petrochemical infrastructure as it develops its downstream business and expands its trading of refined products.
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