Saudi Arabia Says It Can Restore Oil Production but What If It Is Attacked Again?

Stratfor Worldview

Key point: It will take a lot of work to restore oil production and Saudi air defenses aren’t as good as originally thought.

What Happened

Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman and other Saudi energy officials held a news conference Sept. 17 to discuss the Saudi Arabian Oil Co. facilities damaged in Sept. 14 attacks. Prince Abdulaziz said that his country planned to restore all of the production taken offline by the attack by the end of September, and that 50 percent of lost production had already been restored. Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser said that the crucial Abqaiq facility was now processing 2 million barrels per day (bpd) compared with 4.9 million bpd before the attack. Prince Abdulaziz added that Saudi Arabia planned to increase its national production capacity to 11 million bpd by the end of September and to 12 million bpd by the end of November. He noted that in the meantime, Saudi Arabia would withdraw oil from storage to meet export obligations — and that who carried out the attacks remains unknown.

Why It Matters

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