Saudi Aramco reported nearly 300% increase in second-quarter profits on Aug. 8, boosted by recovery of oil and chemical prices.
The state oil giant recorded a net profit of $25.5 billion in the second quarter, the highest level since the end of 2018, while maintaining its quarterly dividend of $18.8 billion, which will be paid in the third quarter.
Beating analyst expectations, the profit surge was attributed to higher oil prices and a recovery in global demand, supported by the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, vaccination campaigns, stimulus measures, and accelerating activity in key markets, Aramco said.
The reopening of major economies has triggered a surge in commodity prices, with crude up around 40% this year. During the past weeks, oil majors including Exxon Mobil, Shell and BP reported stronger-than-expected second-quarter earnings.
“Our second quarter results reflect a strong rebound in worldwide energy demand and we are heading into the second half of 2021 more resilient and more flexible, as the global recovery gains momentum,” Aramco President and CEO Amin Nasser said in a company statement published Aug. 8.
“While there is still some uncertainty around the challenges posed by COVID-19 variants, we have shown that we can adapt swiftly and effectively to changing market conditions,” Nasser said.
He also said the company will move forward on a number of strategic programs, particularly focusing on sustainability and low-carbon fuels.
The oil giant also benefitted from its strategy to optimize its portfolio, announcing billion dollar deals in recent months, Saudi local daily Arab News reported.
Nasser said the company’s historic $12.4 billion pipeline deal was an “endorsement” of its long-term business strategy, representing “significant progress” of Aramco’s portfolio optimization program.