by James Burgess
State-owned Saudi Aramco is officially planning to increase output, despite the prevailing glut and depressed oil prices, citing an expected rise in demand this year.
The announcement, which is likely to result in another dip in oil prices as traders play on the negative news, though not unexpected, comes as Aramco talks about global expansion and moves towards a partial IPO.
Saudi Aramco is considering multiple joint ventures in various countries as it makes its expansion plans, which include the building up its oil refining and production capacity. The company is looking to increase its refining capacity to 8-10 million bbl/d, from 5.4 million bbl/d.
It’s also seeking to increase the capacity of its Shavbah oilfield to 1 million barrels per day—a 250,000-barrel increase.