Saudi Aramco, the world's largest oil company, announces record profit of over $161 billion for 2022
- Oil and gas giant Saudi Aramco announced a record $161 billion profit for 2022 on Sunday.
- The record profit comes amid all-time high oil and gas prices after Russia invaded Ukraine.
Commonly referred to as Saudi Aramco, the oil and gas giant saw its profits increase nearly 50% from $110 billion in 2021 to a record $161.1 billion for 2022, the company announced Sunday. The company saw demand for its product, and global oil prices at large, spike in 2022 amid worldwide restrictions on imports of Russian oil and gas over the invasion of Ukraine.
"Aramco delivered record financial performance in 2022, as oil prices strengthened due to increased demand around the world," Aramco president and CEO Amin H. Nasser said in a statement. "We also continued to focus on our long-term strategy, building both capacity and capability across the value chain with the aim of addressing energy security and sustainability."
Aramco said its production of crude oil was about 11.5 million barrels per day across 2022, and it hopes to raise the level of production to 13 million barrels per day by 2027. Nasser said the company spent over $37 billion this year to increase its production capacity in 2022, and will continue to expand production of oil and gas, as well as "new lower-carbon technologies with potential to achieve additional emission reductions."
The company also said it plans to increase the dividend paid to shareholders, the largest of which is the Saudi government, to $19.5 billion for the fourth quarter of 2022, an increase of about 4% from Q3.
In addition to the war in Ukraine, prices also were driven up by increased demand from China and other countries as they loosened pandemic restrictions and travel increased, and Saudi Arabia's oil pact with Russia and other countries to cap production at a certain level to keep prices high, according to NPR.
Other oil companies including ExxonMobil, BP, and Shell also recorded all-time high profits in 2022 as global oil and gas prices reached record highs last year. However, all of those earnings at $55.7 billion, $28 billion, and about $40 billion, respectively, were dwarfed by Aramco's $161 billion.
The massive earnings are not a welcome sight to everyone.
"It is shocking for a company to make a profit of more than $161 billion in a single year through the sale of fossil fuel – the single largest driver of the climate crisis," Agnès Callamard, secretary general of Amnesty International, said in a statement Sunday. "It is all the more shocking because this surplus was amassed during a global cost-of-living crisis and aided by the increase in energy prices resulting from Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine."
Callamard also said she hopes Aramco uses its profits to help combat climate change, and not to finance or cover up human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia.
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