Saudi Aramco move curbs power of the kingdom’s Oil Ministry

The decision to split Saudi Aramco, the world’s largest oil and gas producer, from the Ministry of Petroleum & Minerals is a logical extension of the decision earlier in the week to appoint its president and chief executive officer Khalid al-Falih as the company’s new chairman.

The move constitutes a historic change in the governance of the kingdom’s petroleum industry, sets the scene for the long-anticipated retirement of Ali al-Naimi, the kingdom’s oil minister, and will spark further speculation about the ultimate objective of radical reforms in the structure of Saudi Arabia’s government since King Salman’s succession in January.

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