Saudi Arabia’s national oil company, Saudi Aramco, has announced that it will increase the number of development wells it drills in 2006 by 61 percent. In a statement, Aramco said that the increases were part of major corporate effort to meet rising global demand.
In September, Aramco announced plans to expand its drilling rig fleet by 100 percent over two years, from 55 in 2004 to 110 in 2006. In November, Aramco revealed that it has allocated $4.8 billion to set up and operate a new oil refinery in the Kingdom’s western region of Yanbu. The project, at the Yanbu Industrial City on the Red Sea coast, will vastly increase Saudi Arabia’s refining capacity.