Riyadh: Saudi Arabia is considering issuing shares in state-owned oil giant Saudi Aramco, the kingdom’s powerful deputy crown prince told The Economist in a rare interview published today.
“That is something that is being reviewed, and we believe a decision will be made over the next few months,” Mohammed bin Salman told the London-based publication after the country posted a record budget deficit due to falling oil prices.
“Personally I’m enthusiastic about this step. I believe it is in the interest of the Saudi market, and it is in the interest of Aramco, and it is for the interest of more transparency, and to counter corruption, if any, that may be circling around Aramco,” said the prince.
The thirty-something son of King Salman chairs the Supreme Council, which has overseen the company since it was separated from the oil ministry last year.
He is also defence minister and heads the kingdom’s main economic coordinating council.
Saudi Aramco is the world’s largest oil company in terms of crude production and exports.