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Explained: Why twin strikes on Saudi Arabia oil facilities matter worldwide

Saudi Aramco drone attacks have impacted the Kingdom's oil production and exports, and in turn the global oil market.

By: Explained Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: September 16, 2019 7:09:48 am
Saudi drone attacks, saudi arabia drone attacks, yemen drone attacks, Saudi arabia oil production, saudi oil production Satellite image shows smoke rising from Aramco’s Abqaiq processing facility in Buqyaq, Saudi Arabia. Planet Labs Inc via AP

On Saturday, Houthi rebels from Yemen carried out drone attacks on two major oil facilities in Saudi Arabia, including the world’s biggest petroleum processing facility run by state-owned Saudi Aramco. This has impacted Saudi Arabia’s oil production and exports, and in turn the global oil market.

5 mn barrels/day

Reuters quoted Aramco as saying the attack has cut output by 5.7 million barrels per day. In another report, Reuters put the figure at 5 million barrels per day. That is close to half of the kingdom’s output, and 5% of global oil supply. Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, ships more than 7 million barrels of oil to global destinations every day. Reuters said the output cut was expected to send oil prices up $3-$5 per barrel on Monday.

260.2 bn barrels

These are the liquid reserves of Aramco, in oil equivalent, as of 2017. These reserves, Reuters said, are larger than the combined reserves of Exxon Mobil Corp, Chevron Corp, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, BP Plc and Total SA, and have an estimated reserve life of 54 years.

10.3 mn barrels/day

The quantity of crude produced by Aramco last year. Company documents cited by Reuters said this was produced at $2.8 a barrel, which the company touted as the lowest cost in the world to produce crude. Aramco also produced 1.1 million barrels of natural gas liquids and 8.9 billion standard cubic feet per day of natural gas.

5.2 mn barrels/day

Quantity of Aramco crude delivered to customers in Asia last year, Reuters said. This was almost three-quarters of Aramco’s total crude exports. The company believes demand will grow faster in Asia than elsewhere in the world – Asian buyers include China, India, South Korea, Japan and Taiwan. Its crude deliveries to North America reached more than 1 million barrels per day last year; to Europe, 864,000 barrels per day.

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