Largest U.S. refinery now belongs to Saudi Arabia

Royal Dutch Shell and Saudi Aramco appear to be getting a divorce, breaking up their joint venture in U.S.-based refining assets.

The two companies joined together to create Motiva Enterprises LLC in 1998, a 50-50 joint venture that operated three refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast. But Shell and Saudi Aramco have seen their interests head in different directions. “It is now time for the partners to pursue their independent downstream goals,” said Abdulrahman Al-Wuhaib, a senior vice president of Saudi Aramco’s downstream unit.

The split will hand the largest U.S. refinery to the state-owned Saudi oil company. The Wall Street Journal speculates that it could also pave the way for some sort of listing of Aramco’s assets in a public offering, something that Saudi officials have alluded to for several months. Few expect Aramco to list its upstream production assets in Saudi Arabia; downstream assets are much more likely to be offered up.

Full article: Largest U.S. refinery now belongs to Saudi Arabia (USA Today)

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