Petronas-Saudi Aramco deal on Rapid on track


KUALA LUMPUR: Petroliam Nasional Bhd’s (Petronas) deal with Saudi Aramco on the Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (Rapid) project in Johor is still on, according to Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani.

“There is no major part (technical issue). That’s a normal negotiation. We’re almost there (completing the deal),” Johari told reporters after opening a conference today.

It was reported that Petronas and Aramco are facing ”technical issues” in finalising the Saudi oil major’s US$7 billion (RM29.6 billion) investment in the refinery project.

Saudi Aramco had in February, during Saudi King Salman’s visit to Malaysia, agreed to buy a US$7 billion stake in the Rapid project in Johor.

On the recent contradictory statements on the compensation for the abolishment of tolls on four highways from next year, Johari explained that he initially did not have a full picture of how long the concessions were and thought that some of them would expire in one or two years’ time.

“But all tolls (concessions) in PLUS are actually expiring in 2038. I thought some of that still have one or two years, so maybe can consider that (no compensation). But now, no choice. The government has to pay. Just for the rakyat, we will have to pay,” said Johari. – by Ee Ann Nee

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