DHAHRAN — Aramco has solidified its intentions to venture into the international liquefied natural gas (LNG) arena by inking definitive agreements to acquire a strategic minority stake in MidOcean Energy for a substantial $500 million. MidOcean Energy, under the stewardship of EIG, a prominent institutional investor in the global energy and infrastructure sectors, is dedicated to LNG operations.
Currently, MidOcean Energy is actively engaged in procuring interests in four Australian LNG projects, as part of its growth strategy aimed at establishing a diversified global LNG enterprise. This landmark collaboration between Aramco and MidOcean Energy marks the oil giant’s maiden foray into international LNG investments.
This agreement further solidifies the evolving partnership between Aramco and EIG, with the latter being a member of the consortium that acquired a 49% stake in Aramco Oil Pipelines Company, a subsidiary of Aramco, in 2021.
The finalization of this transaction is contingent upon meeting specified closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. Notably, Aramco retains the option to amplify its shareholding and associated privileges within MidOcean Energy in the future.
Aramco’s President and CEO, Amin H. Nasser, conveyed his enthusiasm, stating, “We are pleased to be strengthening our strategic partnership with EIG through this acquisition, which marks Aramco’s first international investment in LNG. We anticipate strong demand-led growth for LNG as the world continues on its energy transition journey, with gas being a vital fuel and feedstock in various industries. We believe that gas will be important in meeting the world’s rising need for secure, accessible and more sustainable energy.”
Nasir K. Al-Naimi, Aramco’s Upstream President, added “This is an important step in Aramco’s strategy to become a leading global LNG player. We see significant opportunities in this market, which is positioned for structural, long-term growth. MidOcean Energy is well-equipped to capitalize on rising LNG demand, and this strategic partnership reflects our willingness to work with leading international players to identify and unlock new opportunities at a global level.”
Blair Thomas, Chairman and CEO of EIG, emphasized their commitment to energy transition, remarking, “Energy transition informs every investment decision we make, and we believe LNG has a key role to play in enabling an orderly transition that balances society’s twin goals of decarbonization and energy security. Concurrent with that, we believe the LNG industry is ripe for change and there is a role for a nimble, pure-play company like MidOcean Energy. While our initial focus is on the announced transactions in Australia, we believe the opportunity set is global. We are excited to expand our existing partnership with Aramco to include this important initiative.”
De la Rey Venter, CEO of MidOcean Energy, expressed his gratitude, saying: “It is an honor for MidOcean Energy to have Aramco as a key shareholder and strategic partner. We share the conviction that LNG is an integral enabler of the global energy transition, and we believe that the global LNG industry has strong fundamentals for many decades to come. Synergistic partnerships are core to how MidOcean Energy will do business, grow and thrive. In Aramco, we have a partner that has long-term thinking in its DNA and an unwavering commitment to enduring collaborations. We look forward to pursuing many new opportunities together.” — SG