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Saudi Aramco, BlackRock Sign $15.5bn Gas Pipeline Deal

Saudi Aramco, BlackRock Sign $15.5bn Gas Pipeline Deal

Tuesday, 7 December, 2021 - 19:15
Oil tanks at an oil processing facility of Saudi Aramco at the Abqaiq oil field. (AFP)

Saudi Aramco said it has signed a $15.5 billion lease and leaseback agreement for its gas pipeline network with a consortium led by BlackRock Real Assets and Hassana Investment Company in its second major infrastructure deal this year.


Under the new deal, a newly formed subsidiary, Aramco Gas Pipelines Company, will lease usage rights in Aramco's gas pipeline network and lease them back to Aramco for a 20-year period, the Saudi oil firm said in a statement.


In return, Aramco Gas Pipelines Company will receive a tariff payable by Aramco for the gas products that flow through the network, backed by minimum commitments on throughput.


Aramco will hold a 51 percent stake in Aramco Gas Pipeline Company and sell a 49 percent stake to investors led by BlackRock and Hassana, a Saudi state-backed investment management firm.


"With gas expected to play a key role in the global transition to a more sustainable energy future, our partners will benefit from a deal tied to a world-class gas infrastructure asset," Aramco president and CEO Amin Nasser said in a statement.


"BlackRock is pleased to work with Saudi Aramco and Hassana on this landmark transaction for Saudi Arabia's infrastructure," BlackRock chairman and CEO Larry Fink said.


"Aramco and Saudi Arabia are taking meaningful, forward-looking steps to transition the Saudi economy toward renewables, clean hydrogen and a net zero future."


Aramco, the world's biggest oil producer, has pledged to achieve net zero carbon emissions in its operations by 2050.


Saudi Arabia has also pledged to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2060.


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