King Salman, Chinese president Xi Jinping inaugurate YASREF refinery

King Salman, Chinese president Xi Jinping inaugurate YASREF refinery

11:51 AM, 22nd January 2016
King Salman, Chinese president Xi Jinping inaugurate YASREF refinery
Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) and Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud inaugurate the operation of the Yasref oil refinery, a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and China's Sinopec in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. © Xinhua

RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA: The inauguration ceremony for the YASREF refinery took place in Riyadh in conjunction with President Xi Jinping’s official visit to Saudi Arabia. It was also attended by Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Saudi deputy crown prince and defence minister; Ali bin Ibrahim Al-Naimi, minister of petroleum and mineral resources, Saudi Arabia; Khalid Al-Falih, minister of health and chairman of the board of Saudi Aramco.

Established on 14 January 2012, YASREF is a joint venture between Saudi Aramco, which holds a 62.5 percent share and China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (Sinopec), which holds a 37.5 percent share. YASREF represents both companies’ focus on driving downstream growth across the entire hydrocarbon chain.

Located in Yanbu industrial city on the west coast of Saudi Arabia, the YASREF refinery has the capacity to refine 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) of Arabian heavy crude and produces over 13.5 million gallons per day of ultra-clean transportation fuels and other high-value refined products.

YASREF having a distillate hydrocracker and hydrotreaters, has capacity to deliver close to 100,000 barrels per day of clean, high-octane gasoline through a gasoline complex with an advanced continuous catalytic reformer.

In conjunction with the inauguration, the YASREF joint venture partners, Saudi Aramco and Sinopec, signed a “framework agreement for strategic cooperation” to enhance the competitiveness of the crude oil supplied by Saudi Aramco to Sinopec and to actively explore cooperation opportunities in key areas including oil and gas services, refining, chemicals, crude oil supply, sales, petroleum services, petrochemical services, technology development and promotion, and new energy.

“The mutually beneficial relationship between China and Saudi Arabia has rapidly strengthened in the last two decades. China is the Kingdom’s largest trading partner and Saudi Aramco is proud to be China’s number one supplier of energy,” said Khalid Al-Falih.

“Three strategic factors will help to further strengthen the relationship and transform it from transactional supply to a deeper, long-term partnership,” said Al Falih.

“First, is the doubling of Saudi Arabia’s energy supply to China, coupled with continued downstream investment to support economic growth, both in China and the Kingdom. Second, is implementing Xi Jinping’s ‘One Belt-One Road’ initiative that will enable both the Kingdom to become a stronger partner to China, and also increase China’s investment in the Kingdom’s economic and industrial cities so that the Kingdom is a hub for China to access its Middle East and Africa markets. Thirdly, is the need to continually improve the mutual cooperation between the Kingdom and China in the areas of research, innovation, knowledge transfer, and culture,” added Al Falih.

“YASREF is a win-win partnership with Sinopec and a key element of Saudi Aramco’s strategy of driving value across the hydrocarbons value-chain to maintain our position as the world’s most reliable energy supplier. YASREF converts Arabian heavy crude oil into high-value products for international markets. The facility increases Saudi Aramco’s refining capacity and is an important step in our strategy to become the world’s leading integrated energy enterprise,” said Amin Nasser, president and CEO, Saudi Aramco.

“YASREF will play a significant role in promoting the economic and trade cooperation between China and Saudi Arabia and in enhancing the long-standing friendship between the two countries,” said Dr Wang Yupu, chairman, Sinopec.

“The official inauguration of YASREF marks a proud accomplishment for YASREF, Saudi Aramco and Sinopec. YASREF is a global refinery leader that is helping global customers to meet their energy demands,” said Mohammad Alshammari, president & CEO, YASREF.

The newly signed agreement will enable the two companies to further enhance their relationship and jointly provide advanced, high quality products and services along the hydrocarbon industry chain.

© Worldofchemicals News

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