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Saudi Aramco buys stake In refinery In Russia’s backyard

Saudi Arabia is expanding its downstream presence and crude customers in Eastern Europe, traditionally Russia’s backyard, by buying a stake in a Polish refinery, OilPrice analysed

Saudi Aramco buys stake In refinery In Russia’s backyard

Gdansk, January 13 - Neftegaz.RU. Saudi oil giant Aramco has signed a deal with Polish refiner and fuel retailer PKN Orlen to buy 30 % in a 210,000-bpd refinery in Gdansk, Poland, 100 % in an associated wholesale business, and 50 % in a jet fuel marketing joint venture with BP, the world’s largest oil company and top oil exporter said on Wednesday.

The acquisitions are subject to regulatory approvals, including one from the European Commission, the executive branch of the European Union, Aramco added.
The Saudi oil giant said in a statement:
  • The investments will widen Aramco’s presence in the European downstream sector and further expand its crude imports into Poland, which aligns with PKN Orlen’s strategy of diversifying its energy supplies
Aramco has also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with PKN Orlen and SABIC, one of the world’s largest petrochemicals companies, to explore joint opportunities in Poland and elsewhere in Central and Eastern Europe.
Daniel Obajtek, President of the PKN Orlen Management Board, noted:
  • Such international partnerships are essential for building the largest multi-utility group in this part of Europe
Poland has been seeking for years to diversify its energy supplies away from Russia, and Polish energy firms have signed in recent years various deals for oil supply from Middle Eastern exporters and LNG cargoes from the United States.

Poland is also one of the most vocal opponents of the Russia-led Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project from Russia to Germany, which is currently stuck in regulatory limbo in Germany.

Saudi Aramco’s refinery deal in Poland will help the Saudi oil giant to «strengthen its position in a region traditionally dominated by Russian crude,» Bloomberg Intelligence analysts Salih Yilmaz and Rob Barnett wrote in a note.

Author: Charles Kennedy

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