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Russian banks and Chinese institutional investors would like to invest in the initial public offering of Saudi oil giant Aramco, the head of Russia’s state investment fund said on the sidelines of an energy event in Riyadh on Wednesday.
“There are a number of investors who would like to invest in the Aramco IPO, including several banks,” Kirill Dmitriev, chief executive of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), said, as quoted by Reuters.
“Not only this, we have a Russia-China investment fund, and through that Russia-China investment fund we see a major interest in the Aramco IPO from a number of leading Chinese institutions,” Dmitriev said.
Last month, the chief of the Russian fund said that Russian pension funds were considering taking part in Aramco’s IPO expected to take place in the second half of this year.
“We will see how the IPO process progresses but we see significant interest to invest in the Aramco IPO, from Russia, from China. We believe this is very good for, once again, thinking jointly about oil,” Dmitriev said today.
Saudi Arabia plans to sell 5 percent of its crown jewel Aramco in what would be the world’s largest IPO in history. Saudi officials have claimed that Aramco is worth US$2 trillion, so a 5-percent stake sale could fetch the Kingdom as much as US$100 billion.
Apart from potential investment in Aramco’s IPO, Russia is also considering multi-billion deals with the Saudi investment fund, including in projects and partnerships with Aramco, Dmitriev said.
Back in 2015, RDIF and Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund (PIF), announced a partnership to invest in projects in Russia, such that could strengthen trade, economic, and investment co-operation between the two countries.
Russia and Saudi Arabia have continued to boost economic ties, and oil ties as well, with the cooperation in the OPEC/non-OPEC production cut deal.
Last year, RDIF and PIF created the Russia-Saudi Investment Fund (RSIF) to pursue investment opportunities, primarily in Russia, and in joint ventures that can help Saudi Arabia’s economic diversification. The fund’s total committed capital is US$6 billion.
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.