The Saudi Aramco headquarters (File photo: Reuters)
Egypt’s oil ministry has contracted “other foreign suppliers” to provide the country with its petroleum needs for October after it was informed that the Saudi Aramco company would be unable to send the agreed upon quantities, a ministry official said on Tuesday.
“We have secured 700,000 tonnes of petroleum products from other suppliers to replace Aramco in October,” the ministry’s spokesman Hamdi Abdel-Aziz told Ahram Online without providing further details.
Saudi media outlet Al-Manatiq reported on Monday – citing an anonymous official at Aramco who denied that the company had suspended shipments – that the company is committed to fulfilling its obligation in its contract with the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation.
The Aramco official attributed the delay in shipment delivery to the current re-evaluation of Saudi oil production, which may be reduced by half-a-million barrels per day, after the OPEC’s last meeting in Algeria.
Aramco is yet to issue an official statement addressing the matter, the company's international media office told Ahram Online on Tuesday.
In an attempt to ease the world’s oil glut and surge up the crude prices, the 14-member OPEC announced last month the first reduction in eight years with a plan to cut production to 32.5-33 million barrels per day from 33.47 million in August, the International Energy Agency said.
In April, the oil-rich kingdom agreed with Egypt on a $22-billion soft loan with facilitated payments to finance the latter’s petroleum needs for five years.
Saudi Arabia has supported Cairo with billions of dollars in aid, grants, oil products and cash deposits to help buoy the country's economy following the toppling of president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.