Al-Falih: ‘Going forward the world is going to be Saudi Aramco’s playground’

In a new interview with the Financial Times, Saudi Arabia’s powerful minister of energy, industry, and mineral resources Khalid Al-Falih indicated that Saudi Aramco would take on an active position as investor in resource opportunities outside the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia’s state-owned energy company, Saudi Aramco, will seek to develop an international energy exploration and production business for the first time, the Financial Times interview reveals, “doubling down on oil and gas even as the kingdom seeks to curb its reliance on hydrocarbons.”

“We are no longer going to be inward-looking and focused only on monetising the kingdom’s resources,” Al-Falih said. “Going forward the world is going to be Saudi Aramco’s playground.”

When asked if Saudi Arabia plans to become an international energy player like Royal Dutch Shell or Exxon Mobil, pumping oil as well as gas overseas, Al-Falih said: “Correct.” He added that oil and gas, which has dominated its economy for decades, would ultimately still make up at least 40-50 per cent of the kingdom’s revenues even if ambitious reforms took hold.