Saudi Arabia’s state-backed oil large Aramco noticed its revenue tumble by 44% final 12 months, as coronavirus pandemic restrictions slashed gas demand across the globe.
Aramco, the world’s largest oil firm, reported earnings of $49 billion in 2020, down from $88.2 billion within the 12 months earlier than. CEO Amin Nasser described final 12 months as “one of the most challenging years in history.”
Despite the drop, Aramco stated it might pay out $75 billion in annual dividends to shareholders. The firm started promoting shares publicly in December 2019, but the Saudi authorities owns greater than 98% of them, the Associated Press stories.
As with its rivals, Aramco has confronted historic headwinds within the oil markets introduced on by the coronavirus. Countries have restricted journey and work to confront the coronavirus pandemic, sending oil costs spiraling. At one level final 12 months, oil costs dipped under zero for the primary time in historical past. U.S. power firm Exxon Mobil Corp. recorded its worst 12 months in 2020, NCS Business reported.
Aramco’s earnings report comes after assaults on its amenities, together with a drone strike on Friday claimed by the Iranian-backed Houthi insurgent group in Yemen. The firm has stated the assaults didn’t have an effect on enterprise, though main assaults in 2019 damage manufacturing and jolted oil markets.
Aramco’s 2020 numbers got here in barely under analysts’ expectations however nonetheless represents one of many highest earnings of any firm, based on CNBC.
Aramco’s CEO stated he noticed encouraging indicators going ahead.
“We are seeing a pick-up in demand in Asia and also positive signs elsewhere,” Nasser stated in a press release. “We remain confident that we will emerge on the other side of this pandemic in a position of strength.” [Copyright 2021 NPR]