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Aramco's Repairs Could Take Months Longer Than Company Anticipates, Contractors Say



The Saudi Arabian Oil Co. is in a state of emergency with equipment and service providers, offering to pay premium rates for parts and repair work as it attempts to recover from its largest oil processing facilities, Saudi officials and oil contractors said.

Following a devastating attack on its largest oil-processing facility, it may take many months-more than the maximum of 10 weeks Than a week ago, Aramco is asking for a price for repairs and restorations. In recent days, company executives have bombarded contractors, including

        General Electric
        

      's

        Baker Hughes
        

       

Saudi Arabia and the world's.

Saudi Arabia and the world's most profitable companies are struggling to recover from the attacks, which came within weeks of the Saudi government's reviving plans for its on-again, off-again initial public offering of Aramco shares. Now, the IPO, the company's financial health and the country's economy may be in danger, say Saudi officials and advisers.

Saudi officials and Aramco executives have been

On Saturday, Aramco's chief executive

      Amin Nasser

       reiterated production would be back to its precrisis level by the end of the month. "Not a single shipment to our international customers has been missed or canceled as a result of the attacks," he said. The company intends to return to its maximum output capacity by the end of November.

Aramco has already begun shipping equipment from the U.S.. and Europe to rebuild damaged facilities, said

      Fahad al-Abdulkareem,

       The general manager of southern operations at Aramco.

Saudi officials say there is little sense of calm at the highest levels of the Saudi government, however.

"We are still in a frantic search for spare parts," one of the contractors said Saudi official said.

Little more than a week has passed since Khurai's oil field and Abqaiq, the world's largest oil processing facility, were hit by missiles, causing the largest single outage the oil industry has ever seen.

The Trump administration and Saudi Arabia have blamed the attack on Iran, which has said it wasn 't responsible.

Saudi Aramco oil facility at Abqaiq on Friday.


Photo :
            

        Hamad l Mohammed / Reuters
          

Across the two sites at Abqaiq and Khurais, nine oil processing units, known as stabilizers, were said to have been damaged to varying degrees, Aramco said.

The extent of the damage is a return to normal operations at Abqaiq could take up to eight months, said some Saudi officials.

Repairing the damaged units will take time, anywhere from two to nine months depending on the damage, even if Aramco had contingencies in place and spare tailor-made equipment, "said IHS Markit in a note.

The Saudis reached out to

        Saipem
        

      SpA late last week and told the Italian Contractor the kingdom would pay generously for repairs, said Saudi officials and a contractor with operations in the kingdom. Aramco but with $ 3.5 billion worth of contracts signed in July, it is already overstretched in Saudi Arabia, the contractor said.

Saipem is supporting [Aramco] in the assessment of damages caused by The attack "at the Khurai field, where it already has contracts, the company said in an email.

Contractors can deliver many spare parts Aramco needs within a month or so, but only if they are rushed using air delivery at at an extra cost of 50%, the contractor said.

Aramco has therefore sought the help of General Electric's Baker Hughes and is negotiating with the United States

General Electric, which was acquired by Baker Hughes in 2016, lost its controlling interest in the company last Monday. GE did not respond to a request for comment. Baker Hughes declined to comment.

Meanwhile, Aramco is working hard to keep up the severity of his challenges. What is completely blackened and what is it?

Aramco staffers say they were stunned when they saw the Saudi Energy minister announcing the company's triumphant recovery on international television last week.

"Many Aramco."

Many Aramco executives and board members, meanwhile, are privately expressing that the company can meet its target of a three-week return.

Some "board members are horrified" that the company could communicate optimistic assessments, said one of the people.

From the moment has come Abqaiq and Khurais has started to light the Saudi sky last week, the company has come to grips with the scale of the attack, said Saudi officials.

"We knew looking at the Aramco official.

Aramco's facilities across Saudi Arabia went dark. Control-room staff at Aramco's headquarters in Dhahran initially logged the incident as a series of routine fires.

But as firefighters tackled the blazes on the ground at the Khurai site, emergency staff looked up and saw across the sky as two more Missiles whistled into the facility with a bang, said Aramco's Mr. al-Abdulkareem.

In total, each targeting the oil field's 98-foot stabilization towers hit the Khurais facility on Saturday. Metal debris from the structures is still scattered on the ground Friday.

Write to Summer Said at [email protected], Benoit Faucon at [email protected] and Rory Jones at [email protected]

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