Japanese officials have said the country has no plans to directly invest in Saudi Aramco’s initial public offering.

Yasutoshi Nishimura, an adviser to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, told Reuters on Friday that Japan’s government is not planning to invest in the highly anticipated IPO.

However, Nishimura said Japan may jointly invest in industrial ventures in Saudi Arabia in partnership with the kingdom’s government.

Those investments would be part of a larger effort being spearheaded by Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to bolster Saudi Arabian industries outside of the oil and gas sector.

Prince Mohammed has said that the reforms are also aimed at reducing Saudi Arabia’s dependency on oil and gas revenues.

Sources told Bloomberg earlier this month that Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has proposed that Saudi Aramco list its IPO on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Neither Saudi Aramco nor the Ministry of Economy have commented on the matter.

Saudi Aramco confirmed in January that it was studying a potential initial public offering that will likely see the kingdom’s government retain a majority stake in the firm.

The state-owned oil giant has reportedly met with several well known boutique banks as it moves closer to announcing the offer.

Sources told Bloomberg earlier this month that Saudi Aramco has met with Rothschild & Co., Lazard Ltd. and Moelis & Co. to discuss the company’s IPO plans.

The sources added that Saudi Aramco could choose a winner sometime this month but no decision has been made yet.

Prince Mohammed has said Saudi Aramco could be worth more than $2 trillion.

Saudi Arabia claimed the top spot as the world’s largest oil producer last month as low oil prices dented U.S. production.

Saudi Arabia’s total liquids output, a category that includes natural gas liquids, reached 12.58 million bpd in August, besting a U.S. output level of 12.2 million bpd.


Leave a Reply