Saudi Arabia to restructure Aramco, separate it from oil ministry – Arabiya TV/Reuters
(Reuters) – Saudi Arabia’s Supreme Economic Council has approved a restructuring of state oil company Saudi Aramco [SDABO.UL] that includes separating it from the oil ministry, Al Arabiya television channel reported on Friday, citing sources.
There are no indications that the move will lead to changes in the fundamental way the world’s top crude exporter makes its oil decisions.
“Saudi Supreme Economic Council agrees on Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s vision of restructuring oil-giant Aramco,” Arabiya reported on its Twitter account.
“Restructuring of Saudi Aramco includes separation from petroleum ministry,” the channel said.
The Supreme Economic Council is a new body formed by King Salman earlier this year to replace the Supreme Petroleum Council, which used to help set the kingdom’s oil policy.
The new council is headed by the king’s son Prince Mohammed, a move seen by analysts as laying the ground for a generational shift in how Riyadh develops its energy and economic strategies.
The main tenets of Saudi oil policy, including maintaining the ability to stabilize markets via an expensive spare-capacity cushion and a reluctance to interfere in the market for political reasons, are set by the top members of the ruling Al Saud family.
On Wednesday, King Salman appointed Saudi Aramco’s chief executive as chairman of the state oil firm and health minister, as part of a major reshuffle in the OPEC kingpin.
Aramco officials could not be immediately reached for comment on Friday, which is a day off in the Gulf Arab kingdom.