A fire at Saudi Aramco’s oil terminal Ras Tanura injured eight workers on Tuesday morning, but oil and gas operations at the site have not been affected, the Saudi Arabian Oil Co said in statement.
The fire, the cause of which is yet unknown, has been fully contained, the company said. Six contractors and two employees were injured and treated for their wounds. Workers at the oil terminal have been evacuated, Aramco noted, adding that it would investigate the cause of the fire.
According to the company’s 2015 in Numbers factsheet, the Ras Tanura facility has the highest refining capacity of Aramco’s domestic operations at 550,000 barrels of oil per day.
State-held Aramco is the world’s most valuable company, according to Bloomberg, and is worth more than US$2 trillion. The Saudi government is planning to sell 5 percent in Aramco in an initial public offering (IPO) as early as in 2017 and reap US$100 billion from the sale.
The upcoming IPO has seen investment banks flocking to Riyadh to try to secure deals to do a share of the work on the offering. Saudi Arabia has paid out US$100 million in fees to investment banks during the first five months of this year—a 30 percent increase. The IPO of Saudi Aramco alone is expected to generate around US$50 million in fees.
Last month, Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority (CMA) issued new rules allowing foreign investors to buy shares directly in IPOs. The new regulations are expected to take effect on January 1 of next year, and will allow foreign investors to bid in the book-building process. Prior to this new rule, non-Saudi institutions could purchase shares in IPOs only on a case-by-case basis, although they could make indirect purchases such as using local IPO funds.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.