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Aramco emerges from pandemic in better shape than peers

A picture taken on November 3, 2019 shows a sign of Saudi Aramco's initial public offering (IPO) during a press conference by the state company in the eastern Saudi Arabian region of Dhahran. Saudi Aramco confirmed it planned to list on the Riyadh stock exchange, describing it as a
A picture taken on November 3, 2019 shows a sign of Saudi Aramco's initial public offering (IPO) during a press conference by the state company in the eastern Saudi Arabian region of Dhahran. Saudi Aramco confirmed it planned to list on the Riyadh stock exchange, describing it as a "significant milestone" in the history of the energy giant. (AFP)
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13 Aug 2020 02:08:20 GMT9
13 Aug 2020 02:08:20 GMT9

Aramco’s results stood out from the pack of global oil and gas companies reporting their numbers over the last few weeks.

Saudi Arabia’s national oil company remains the most profitable among its peers, with a bottom line profit of $16.7 billion. Many other companies in the sector have had a much tougher time in adjusting to the new normal.

Despite all the challenges that the world faced during the second quarter; Saudi Aramco achieved an outstanding performance on all fronts.

The second quarter was unsurprisingly much worse than the first and the steep losses incurred by oil companies does not bode well for future investment in key energy infrastructure as they slash expenditure across operations and exploration.

Weaker oil prices that fell to historical lows in April and similarly weak refining margins have resulted in losses for many industry titans, but not, it is worth noting, for Saudi Aramco.

It still managed to achieve a net income that exceed the profit of the five major international oil companies combined and will make good on its dividend commitment to shareholders despite the extraordinary events of recent months.

In this, it is demonstrating to its shareholders the same kind of resilience it displayed in the aftermath of the attack on its facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais in 2019, when production was quickly restored and shipping commitments maintained against all the odds.

It has displayed similar resilience in recovering from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic that has had a savage impact on the broader energy sector. Surrounded by volatility, its stock has remained remarkably stable which will be a comfort for investors as the energy sector faces a challenging period ahead.

• Faisal Faeq is an energy and oil marketing adviser. He was formerly with OPEC and Saudi Aramco.

Twitter: @faisalfaeq

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