News broke this week that Saudi Arabia’s state oil company, Aramco, is further strengthening its relationship with the Chinese market. Aramco’s latest deal is a 10% acquisition of oil refining firm Rongsheng Petrochemical Co. for $3.6 billion. This deal was announced a day after Aramco confirmed a new venture with two other Chinese oil companies to build a refinery in the country’s northeast.
These deals may help to fuel speculation that Aramco could be set to list one of its subsidiary companies on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKSE). On a recent trip to the Gulf, Hong Kong’s Chief Executive John Lee visited Riyadh and emphasized his city’s credentials as a global financial hub. Lee announced that Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia are to launch formal negotiations on an Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement. He outlined how “the agreement will further promote bilateral investment flows and strengthen the confidence of investors from both sides.” This included Aramco potentially listing on the HKSE.