Saudi Arabian oil giant Aramco has gained total control of the biggest oil refinery in the U.S., according to a statement by Anglo-Dutch oil company Royal Dutch Shell on Monday.
Shell and Aramco formed a joint venture in 1998 called Motiva Enterprise, which had a refining operation with a 50-50 share basis since 2002.
The two companies finalized an agreement to separate the assets of Motiva in March. As of Monday, Aramco has assumed full ownership of the biggest refinery in the U.S. - Port Arthur in the state of Texas - which has a 600,000-barrel refining capacity, and 24 distribution terminals in the region, according to the Shell statement.
The Anglo-Dutch firm assumed sole ownership of Norco and Convent refineries in the state of Louisiana, and 11 distribution terminals, Shell said. Saudi Arabia, the world's biggest crude oil exporter, is looking for ways to diversify its revenues from oil sales; and the U.S., which represented 20 percent of global oil consumption in 2015, is considered a major market for Aramco, according to experts.
The Kingdom exported an average of 1.1 million barrels per day of crude to the U.S. last year, coming second only behind Canada that exported an average of 3.3 million barrels a day of crude to its southern neighbor, according to data from U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).