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Saudi Arabia strengthening energy ties with Russia

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Bloomberg is reporting that Saudi Arabia is looking at opportunities to acquire oil and gas assets in Russia, strengthening ties between the world’s largest energy exporters as the Saudi king visits Moscow.

According to sources, OPEC’s biggest crude producer is considering investing in Russia’s largest oil drilling contractor, Eurasia Drilling Co., and Novatek PJSC’s proposed Arctic LNG 2 project. While discussions are at an early stage, some framework accords could be signed during King Salman bin Abdulaziz’s trip.

Saudi Energy Minister Al-Falih told reporters that Saudi Aramco will consider investing in upstream projects abroad focusing mainly on developing natural gas. He did not rule out importing gas into the kingdom. There are plans to sell shares to investors by the end of 2018.

Novatek, which aims to launch its first LNG plant in the Arctic in November, is planning the second project to follow in 2022 or 2023, making it Russia’s biggest LNG producer.

Eurasia, which has around 20% of the Russian oil-drilling market, in June agreed ‘on investments’ from China and the Middle East, led by the state-run Russian Direct Investment Fund.

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