Saudi Aramco signed 10 agreements spanning manufacturing, low carbon energy development and finance with South Korean companies, further strengthening cross-border co-operation.
The state-owned oil company signed one deal and nine preliminary agreements with South Korean companies at the Saudi-Korean Investment Forum in Riyadh on Tuesday.
“The agreements seek to deepen collaboration between Aramco and leading Korean companies to unlock new opportunities in the fields of advanced technology, manufacturing and finance, illustrating Aramco’s commitment to driving development through global partnerships,” said Amin Nasser, Aramco president and chief executive.
Aramco signed an agreement with South Korea’s Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Company and the Saudi Arabian Industrial Investments Company, Dussur, to establish a casting and forging unit to produce equipment such as valves, pumps, compressors, wellheads and gas and wind turbines.
The planned joint venture has a production target of 60,000 tonnes per year and plans to supply other GCC markets later, Aramco said.
Aramco also signed preliminary agreements with Korean energy companies such as Kepco, S-Oil, Posco, Hyundai Oilbank, H2Korea and Lotte Chemical to explore potential collaboration in the supply, transportation, utilisation and certification of hydrogen and ammonia.
The companies also plan to study the feasibility of converting exported ammonia into hydrogen — a process known as ammonia back-cracking. This marks the first step towards a potential large-scale production facility for hydrogen and ammonia in Saudi Arabia, which would also include a carbon capture and storage facility, Aramco said.
The state-owned oil company also signed an agreement with the Export-Import Bank of Korea to explore strategic financing solutions to support Aramco's business and investment activities involving South Korean companies.
Joint projects by Saudi Arabia and South Korea, out of which 20 per cent are industrial projects, are worth about $1 billion, the Saudi Press Agency reported. Meanwhile, trade between the two countries jumped 66 per cent in the third quarter of 2021, to 27.7bn Saudi riyals ($7bn), the state news agency said.
Saudi Arabia and South Korea signed 13 agreements in total on Tuesday at the Saudi-Korean Business Forum.
The Ministry of Investment signed an agreement with Samsung C&T to help it develop and localise industries related to construction technologies, green products and in building and financing infrastructure projects.
Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) signed a preliminary deal with Korean firms Posco and Samsung C&T to develop a green hydrogen production project in the kingdom.
Housing company Roshn and Samsung C&T agreed to establish a non-exclusive framework to jointly explore opportunities in housing development and precast concrete blocks.
Meanwhile, the South Korean Intellectual Property Office and the Saudi Authority for Intellectual Property (SAIP) signed advanced partnership arrangements for bilateral co-operation, including the secondment of South Korean experts to SAIP.
In addition, the Ministry of National Guard signed a letter of intent with EzCaretech to jointly provide Dr Answer — an artificial intelligence-based medical solutions tool — within targeted hospitals.
South Korea's Kumho tyre and Saudi Arabia's Al Sahm Al Usud for Tires also signed an agreement to establish a factory for tyre production. The factory’s production capacity will reach 15 million tires annually, and it is expected to start operations in the third quarter of 2023.