Saudi Arabia: Energy Infrastructure EIG Enters into 12.4 Billion Dollar Infrastructure Deal with Aramco
Under the terms of the contract, a consortium led by EIG will acquire 49 % equity stake in the newly established entity Aramco Oil Pipelines Company. The deal is claimed to be one of the world’s largest energy infrastructure transactions.
Washington/USA – EIG has recently announced that it has entered into a lease and lease-back agreement with Saudi Arabian Oil Co. (Aramco), under which a consortium of investors led by EIG will acquire a 49 % equity stake in Aramco Oil Pipelines Company (Aramco Oil Pipelines), a newly formed entity with rights to 25-years of tariff payments for oil transported through Aramco’s stabilized crude oil pipeline network. The transaction is valued at approximately 12.4 billion dollars with Aramco holding the remaining 51 % stake in the new entity, indicating a total equity value of Aramco Oil Pipelines of approximately 25.3 billion dollars.
The pipeline network, which includes all of Aramco’s existing and future stabilized crude pipelines in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, connects oilfields to downstream networks. The pipeline network transports 100 % of Aramco’s crude oil produced in the Kingdom under its Concession Agreement.
As part of the transaction, Aramco will lease the usage rights in its stabilized crude oil pipelines network to Aramco Oil Pipelines, and Aramco Oil Pipelines will grant back to Aramco the exclusive right to use, transport through, operate and maintain the pipeline network during the 25-year period in exchange for a quarterly, volume-based tariff, payable by Aramco. The tariff will be backed by minimum volume commitments. Aramco will at all times retain title to, and operational control of, the pipeline network and will assume all operating and capital expense risk. The transaction will not impose any restrictions on Aramco’s actual crude oil production volumes that are subject to production decisions issued by the Kingdom.
“This is an extraordinary opportunity for EIG’s investors, and we are proud to partner with Aramco in this marquee global infrastructure asset,” said R. Blair Thomas, EIG’s Chairman and CEO. “This transaction aligns perfectly with EIG’s philosophy of investing in high-quality assets with contracted cash flows in critical infrastructure. We look forward to a long-term partnership with Aramco and to delivering value for our investors through this landmark investment.”
Aramco President & CEO, Amin H. Nasser, said: “This landmark transaction defines the way forward for our portfolio optimization program. We are capitalizing on new opportunities that also align strategically with the Kingdom’s recently-launched Shareek program. Aramco’s strong capital structure will be further enhanced with this deal, which in turn will help maximize returns for our shareholders. Additionally, our long-term partners in this venture will benefit from investment in one of the world’s most impressive energy infrastructures. Moving forward, we will continue to explore opportunities that underpin our strategy of long-term value creation.”
The transaction is expected to close as soon as practicable, subject to customary closing conditions, including any required merger control and related regulatory approvals.