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Sun 23 Aug 2020 06:32 PM

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Saudi Aramco reshuffles top management, Al Naimi to head upstream

Aramco has suspended a deal to build a $10 billion refining and petrochemicals complex in China, according to reports

Saudi Aramco reshuffles top management, Al Naimi to head upstream

By far, Saudi Aramco’s most profitable unit is its upstream business.

Saudi Aramco reshuffled jobs at its top management, appointing an acting head for the upstream business, as the world’s biggest oil producer cuts spending to cope with low oil prices.

Nasir Al Naimi will become head of the upstream division until further notice, said people familiar with matter, who asked not to be identified as the matter is private. Mohammed Al Qahtani, who ran the unit, will become head of downstream business.

Aramco couldn’t be reached for comment immediately.

In the oil industry, the upstream business focuses on exploration and production, while the downstream business focuses on refining, chemicals and marketing. By far, Aramco’s most profitable unit is its upstream business.

The oil producer earlier Sunday said it’ll set up a division for portfolio optimisation and strategic alignment, headed by senior vice president Abdulaziz Al Gudaimi. He previously ran Aramco’s downstream business, according to information on the company’s website.

“We continue to leverage our capabilities in assessing our existing portfolio, identifying new opportunities and adapting to a rapidly evolving global landscape,” Aramco chief executive officer Amin Nasser said.

The oil-price crash and the coronavirus’s impact on energy demand have changed the calculations for energy companies’ projects around the world. Aramco, which plans deep cuts to its capital spending, suspended a deal to build a $10 billion refining and petrochemicals complex in China, according to people familiar with the matter.

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