Oil tanks seen at the Saudi Aramco facility in Dammam. Reuters
Saudi Arabia raised the local price for Octane 95 to 2.10 riyals from 2.02 riyals last quarter and Octane 91 to 1.44 riyals from 1.37 riyals per litre, state oil firm Saudi Aramco said on Saturday.
The change goes into effect on Sunday (April 14), the company said in a statement, adding that domestic fuel prices go up or down according to changes in export prices from Saudi Arabia to global markets.
Riyadh roughly doubled domestic prices a year ago in an effort to boost energy efficiency, part of economic reforms aimed at weaning the world’s top crude exporter away from oil.
Earlier Saudi Aramco said it is set to raise $12 billion with its first international bond issue after receiving more than $100 billion in orders, a record breaking vote of market confidence for the oil giant.
State-owned Aramco’s bond issue, split into maturities ranging from three to 30 years, is seen as a gauge of potential investor interest in the Saudi company’s eventual initial public offering. Before the bond deal was marketed, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said initial indications of interest for the paper were over $30 billion. Having swelled to over $100 billion during the sale process, demand appeared to be the largest ever for emerging markets bonds, fund managers said, surpassing orderbook value of more than $52 billion for Qatar’s $12 billion deal last year, $67 billion for Saudi Arabia’s inaugural issue in 2016 and $69 billion orders for Argentina›s $16.5 billion trade that year.
Such strong interest was also the latest sign that international investors are pouring money back into Saudi Arabia. “Purely on figures, it is a fantastic credit,” said Damien Buchet, CIO of the EM Total Return Strategy, Finisterre Capital.