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Aramco Shelves $20 Billion Petrochemical Plan After Oil’s Crash

  • Saudi state firm scales back plans for Yanbu plant on Red Sea
  • Cuts made as Aramco seeks to preserve a $75 billion dividend
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Saudi Aramco is shelving multi-billion-dollar petrochemical and gas projects as the state oil giant’s determination to preserve its dividend forces it to cut back on major investments.

The world’s biggest oil company is abandoning plans to build a $20 billion crude-to-chemicals plant at Yanbu on Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea coast, according to two people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak to the media. It’s also reviewing a decision last year to buy 25% of Sempra Energy’s liquefied natural gas terminal in Texas -- which would cost several billion dollars -- and has already taken some staff off the project, according to a separate person.