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Saudi Aramco has completed the purchase of equity in Korean refiner S-Oil from Hanjin Energy, a subsidiary of Korean Air Lines, taking its stake from 34.99% to 63.4%. The purchase, agreed six months ago, transferred 31.9mn shares in S-Oil to Aramco at a cost of 1.98 trillion Korean Won ($1.83bn).
S-Oil’s assets include one of the world’s largest refineries, the 670,000 b/d Onsan plant in Ulsan. Besides fitting in with Aramco’s investment in overseas refining capacity to secure markets for crude exports, S-Oil’s petrochemicals capacity – 1.7mn ton/year of paraxylene and 450,000 t/y of benzene produced from naphtha feedstock – matches Aramco’s increasing overlapping of refining and petrochemicals business (MEES, 4 July 2014).
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