Khalid al-Falih. Image courtesy of

Saudi Arabia’s state owned Saudi Aramco said Tuesday it will renegotiate contracts and put some projects on the back burner as oil prices dropped to six and a half year lows.

Saudi Aramco CEO Khalid al-Falih did not specify the projects or contracts that will affected by the plans.

“We will have to adjust to the realities of today. We will push some projects into the future, we will stretch some of them, we will renegotiate some contracts,” Falih told Reuters.

Al-Falih said Saudi Aramco has already invested $3 billion in unconventional gas development and has put aside an additional $7 billion for those projects.

The oil rich kingdom produced 9.61 million barrels of crude per day in November and exported about 7.3 million bpd.

In November, Saudi Arabia refused calls by other OPEC members to reduce output targets amid falling oil prices.

“Saudi Arabia will not single handedly balance the market on a downturn,” al-Falih said.

Saudi Aramco’s announcement comes just a week after the death of Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah.

The king’s successor and younger brother, the crown prince Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, has pledged to uphold OPEC’s current 30 million barrels per day output target.

While analysts expect King Salman to stick to his predecessor’s policies in the short term Saudi Aramco’s plans are the first indication that plummeting oil prices could impact the country’s production levels.

Last week Saudi Aramco reportedly asked oil services companies for discounted rates.

“I think we got spoiled with $100 oil and we were focused on building capacity and we lost focus on fiscal discipline,” al-Falih said.


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