MOSCOW (MRC) -- Saudi Arabia’s state-controlled oil giant Aramco on Sunday reported a record net income of USD161.1 billion for 2022 — the largest annual profit ever achieved by an oil and gas company, said Cnbc.
Aramco said net income increased 46.5 percent over the year, from USD110 billion in 2021. Free cash flow also reached a record USD148.5 billion in 2022, compared with USD107.5 billion in 2021.
“This is probably the highest net income ever recorded in the corporate world,” Aramco CEO Amin Nasser said on a Sunday earnings call. The results are nearly triple the profit that oil major ExxonMobil posted for 2022, bolstered by soaring oil and gas prices through last year, along with higher sale volumes and improved margins for refined products.
Oil and gas prices surged at the start of 2022, with western sanctions on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine steadily tightening access to Moscow’s supplies, particularly seaborne crude and oil products. Oil prices have since pulled back more than 25% year-on-year, with hot inflation and rising interest rates overshadowing a more bullish demand outlook from China. Brent and WTI prices fell 6% last week alone. Brent last traded at around USD80 dollars per barrel.
“We are cautiously optimistic,” Nasser said. “If you consider China opening up, the pickup in jet fuels and the very limited spare capacity, we are cautiously optimistic in the short to mid-term [that] markets will remain tightly balanced.”
Aramco raised its fourth-quarter dividend by 4% to USD19.5 billion, to be paid in the first quarter of 2023. Aramco also said it would issue bonus shares to eligible shareholders as a result. “We’re aiming to sustain [the dividend] at this level,” Aramco Chief Financial Officer Ziad Al-Murshed told the earnings call. “We have the financial strength to go through the ups and downs of the cycle."
We remind, Saudi Aramco has agreed to take a minority stake in a new powertrain engine company that French car maker Renault SA and China's Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd plan to set up jointly, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.
A report in January said that Aramco has been involved in advanced discussions to take a stake of up to 20% in a previously announced but still-unnamed Geely-Renault powertrain company that would develop and supply internal combustion engines (ICE) and hybrid technologies.