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Oil giant Saudi Aramco sees profits drop to $ 49 billion in 2020 | Voice of America

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DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – Saudi Arabia’s state-backed oil giant Aramco announced on Sunday that its profits had fallen sharply in 2020 to $ 49 billion, a sharp drop that came as the coronavirus pandemic shook the world energy markets.

Saudi Arabian Oil Co. released its financial results a year after the pandemic dropped the price of oil to historically low levels as people stopped moving around the world to stem the spread of the virus. In recent weeks, however, the price has risen slightly as restrictions on movement have eased, trade increases, and more people are getting vaccinated against COVID-19. Still, analysts warn that a peak in demand could still be a long way off.

Public figures, mandatory since the predominantly state-owned company listed a slice of its stock on the Riyad Tadawul Stock Exchange in 2019, offer valuable insight into the health of the region’s largest economy. Despite Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salmans’ efforts to diversify the oil economy, the kingdom remains heavily dependent on oil exports to fuel government spending.

Saudi Aramco’s profit of $ 49 billion in 2020 is down from $ 88.2 billion in 2019 to $ 111.1 billion in 2018. Yet Aramco remains one of the most valuable companies in the world .

The company produced the equivalent of 9.2 million barrels per day of crude oil during the year, according to its annual results. Capital spending fell in 2020 to $ 27 billion, from $ 32.8 billion the year before. Aramco plans to spend $ 35 billion this year, significantly less than previous estimates of $ 40 billion to $ 45 billion.

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