Aramco seeks to expand in US, says Trump is pro-oil

Aramco seeks to expand in US, says Trump is pro-oil
Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser is looking at business opportunitues in the US. (Reuters)
Updated 26 January 2018

Aramco seeks to expand in US, says Trump is pro-oil

Aramco seeks to expand in US, says Trump is pro-oil

DAVOS: Saudi Aramco is looking to expand in the United States where President Donald Trump’s tax cuts and support for the oil industry are making business increasingly attractive, its chief executive told Reuters.
Aramco already controls a large refinery in Texas. It is also preparing to launch what could be the world’s largest initial public offer (IPO) and is considering listing its shares in New York among several possible exchanges.
“We are looking at new business opportunities in the US and with the tax cuts it will make it much more profitable ... It is part of our strategy to grow our business in the US,” Amin Nasser said in an interview.
“The Trump administration has been positive toward the energy industry. As long as what they are doing is in the interest of all and the US economy is growing, we are happy,” Nasser said on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos.
“The whole oil industry is benefiting from the current administration.”
Aramco wants to list this year.
“This is a company that provides a significant portion of the country’s GDP. There are pros and cons for every exchange. It needs to be well analyzed,” Nasser said.
“Of course, the New York stock exchange is the best in terms of liquidity. But it is not just the question of liquidity. It is also about other rules and regulations and the ease of doing business in these markets.”
Saudi Arabia is also considering listing Aramco shares on the local stock exchange, Tadawul, but there are concerns that this could swamp the bourse. Nasser noted an official advisory council’s request for the securities regulator to study the impact of Aramco’s listing on Tadawul.
“All of these things need to be looked at ... They (the advisory council) are asking a legitimate question.”
Nasser said he was not concerned by a growing number of funds and investors — including Norway’s sovereign fund, the world’s biggest — moving away from investing in oil stocks.
“We know we are the lowest-cost producer in the world ... I’m sure Aramco will be attractive.”
Nasser said healthy global demand combined with OPEC supply cuts should help oil markets achieve a balance of supply and demand and lead to a reduction in oil stocks to a five-year average by the end of the year.
He also said he was not concerned by rising US oil exports though the Saudi market share in some core markets was declining.
“We have a good share in each market. We don’t have an issue in terms of market share. Our long-term sales agreements work well.”