Saudi fund raises ownership stake in ACWA Power to 50%

Saudi fund raises ownership stake in ACWA Power to 50%
Acwa Power windmills in Jbel Sendouq, on the outskirts of Tangier, Morocco, June 29, 2018. (Reuters)
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Updated 20 November 2020

Saudi fund raises ownership stake in ACWA Power to 50%

Saudi fund raises ownership stake in ACWA Power to 50%
  • ACWA Power is planning an IPO and leads a consortium that will build and operate renewable power-based utilities at Saudi Arabia’s flagship Red Sea tourism project
  • PIF, which manages $360 billion worth of funds, pursues a two-pronged strategy — building an international portfolio of investments and investing locally in projects

CAIRO/DUBAI: The Public Investment Fund, Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, said on Thursday it has increased its stake in ACWA Power to 50% from 33.6% as part of a move to support the renewable energy sector in Saudi Arabia.
ACWA Power is planning an initial public offering and leads a consortium that will build and operate renewable power-based utilities at Saudi Arabia’s flagship Red Sea tourism project.
“We believe that ACWA Power will play a significant role in both driving and diversifying economic growth in the future — while also providing enduring commercial return for the people of the kingdom,” the fund said in a statement.
In June, ACWA Power’s chief executive had told Reuters the company expects to achieve its target of more than $10 billion in new investments this year, as the coronavirus pandemic had “minimal impact” on its projects.
The company, which had delayed its IPO plans two years ago, is still committed to a planned IPO, although execution will depend on the right timing and market conditions, Chief Executive Paddy Padmanathan said.
The stake increase by the PIF was expected after Yasir Al-Rumayyan, the head of Saudi PIF, said last year it planned to increase its stake in ACWA Power to 40% from 29.28%.
PIF, which manages $360 billion worth of funds, pursues a two-pronged strategy — building an international portfolio of investments and investing locally in projects that will help reduce Saudi Arabia’s reliance on oil.
A US regulatory filing this week showed the PIF had cut its exposure to North American equities by $3 billion in the third quarter, offloading some exchange traded funds (ETF) and stocks.


Saudi Arabia pips Russia to be China’s biggest oil supplier in 2020

Saudi Arabia pips Russia to be China’s biggest oil supplier in 2020
Updated 20 January 2021

Saudi Arabia pips Russia to be China’s biggest oil supplier in 2020

Saudi Arabia pips Russia to be China’s biggest oil supplier in 2020
  • Oil demand in China, the world’s top oil importer, remained strong last year
  • Saudi shipments to China in 2020 rose 1.9 percent from a year earlier to 84.92 million tons

BEIJING/SINGAPORE: Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest oil exporter, beat Russia to keep its ranking as China’s top crude supplier in 2020, Chinese government data showed on Wednesday.
Oil demand in China, the world’s top oil importer, remained strong last year even as the coronavirus crisis hammered global appetite.
Chinese imports rose 7.3 percent to a record of 542.4 million tons or 10.85 million barrels per day (bpd).
Saudi shipments to China in 2020 rose 1.9 percent from a year earlier to 84.92 million tons, or about 1.69 million bpd, data from the General Administration of Chinese Customs showed.
Russia was a close second with shipments of 83.57 million tons, or 1.67 million bpd, up 7.6 percent from 2019, the data showed.
In December, Saudi supplies were 6.94 million tons, down 0.8 percent from the same month a year earlier, while Russian volumes fell 15.7 percent to 6.2 million tons.
China’s imports of US oil more than tripled in 2020 to 19.76 million tons, or 394,000 bpd, compared to a year earlier, as companies bought crude under a trade deal between Washington and Beijing.
Imports were 3.6 million tons in December.
China’s total purchases of major US energy products, including crude, liquefied natural gas, propane, butane and coal, were worth $9.784 billion in 2020, about 38.7 percent of the $25.3 billion target set out in the Phase 1 trade deal.
Saudi Arabia has played catch up as a supplier since November by cutting prices to woo customers, overtaking Russia, which had led for most of 2020 with more flexible transport options and geographical proximity to Chinese refiners.
US sanctions nearly choked off oil exports from Iran and Venezuela, while Iraq was the main beneficiary.
Iraq’s oil exports to China rose 16.1 percent to 60.12 million tons in 2020, making it China’s third largest oil supplier.
Cashing in on lower prices and with aggressive marketing to China’s independent refiners, Brazil expanded oil exports to China to become its fourth biggest supplier last year.
Brazil’s oil exports to China rose 5.1 percent to 42.19 million tons.