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In the month of March, Saudi Arabia shipped four cargoes of oil products to Egypt, according to the Gulf nation’s Oil Minister Khalid al-Falih on Thursday.
The KSA’s agreement with Egypt to reinstate a purchase order on hiatus is going well, the Saudi minister added on the sidelines of the 33rd session of a meeting of the Arab Ministerial Council of Electricity in Cairo. The event is part of the Arab League’s regional program.
"It was agreed that the Saudi Arabian side would resume Aramco's shipping of oil products as per the commercial contract signed between the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation and Aramco," a statement from the Egyptian Oil Ministry said last month after the restarted shipments were announced. with 700,000 tons of refined oil products monthly for half a decade, but the shipments stopped abruptly in October.
Saudi Aramco did not offer an explanation for the halt, but the Egyptian Petroleum Ministry said: “According to Aramco, the postponement of shipments was due to commercial conditions on its part amidst changes in global oil market prices and Saudi Arabia's reduced oil production levels, as well as routine maintenance to refineries.”
Both sides deny claims that geopolitical tensions led to the disruption in oil shipments, though the two nations have been at odds regarding Syria and other issues in the recent past.
Saudi Arabia has been a major donor to Egypt since President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi seized power in a violent countercoup in mid-2013, but Riyadh has become frustrated with Sisi's lack of economic reforms and his reluctance to be drawn into the conflict in Yemen.
By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com
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Zainab Calcuttawala is an American journalist based in Morocco. She completed her undergraduate coursework at the University of Texas at Austin (Hook’em) and reports on…