Saudi Aramco eyes deal-signing with US firms during Trump visit

Saudi Aramco eyes deal-signing with US firms during Trump visit
(Photo Credit: Arabianeye-Reuters)

Riyadh – Mubasher: Saudi Aramco expects to sign deals with 12 US companies on Saturday during a visit by US President Donald Trump to Saudi Arabia, sources told Reuters on Thursday.

The deals will be with major US firms such as Schlumberger, Halliburton, Baker Hughes, Weatherford, and General Electric (GE) as well as with several drilling companies such as National Oilwell Varco (NOV), Nabors Industries and Rowan Companies, the sources who were not identified said.

This comes as part of the Saudi oil giant’s scheme to bolster local manufacturing, the sources added.

Last year, the world’s largest oil company launched its In-Kingdom Total Value Add programme (IKTVA), through which it said it was planning to double the percentage of locally-produced energy-related goods and services to around 70% by 2021.

In December, Aramco inked agreements with drillers Rowan and Nabors Industries to establish joint ventures under the IKTVA programme.

"These (new) partnerships will boost bilateral investment towards localisation," one of the sources told Reuters.

It is expected that the IKTVA programme will generate around 500,000 direct and indirect jobs for Saudis, making it a crucial part of the kingdom's Vision 2030 economic reform plan.

Aramco is to have a major role in its home country’s Vision 2030 by developing industrial projects. Following the sharp drop in oil prices, Saudi Arabia has begun working on diversifying its economy to tackle its budget deficit.

Source: Mubasher