Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refining (Yasref) has secured $4.7bn syndicated loan to refinance an existing shareholders’ credit facility.


The loan has been secured from a syndicate of 26 local, regional and international financial institutions.

Yasref is a joint venture company formed between Saudi Aramco and China Petroleum & Chemical (Sinopec) in January 2014 to focus on driving downstream growth across the hydrocarbon chain.

Saudi Aramco has 62.5% stake in the joint venture, while Sinopec owns 37.5% interest.

Primarily, the loan will be used to refinance shareholders’ funds used for the construction of the 400,000 barrel per day refinery that is located next to the Red Sea.

Yasref president and CEO Mohammad Alshammari said: "This represents a major milestone for Yasref and our employees as well as changes the Company’s financial structure and aligns it with the market.

"It also supports our continued commitment to excellence and ensures that the Company will run and operate according to the highest commercial standards. This will definitely enhance Yasref’s competitive position on the market stage."

The credit facilities include a US dollar denominated 7-year term facility signed with 17 regional and international financial institutions for an aggregate amount of $3.1bn.

It also includes Saudi Arabian riyal denominated 7-year term facility totaling $1.6bn signed with nine participating local financial institutions.

Designed to produce over 13.5 million gallons per day of ultra-clean transportation fuels and other high-value refined products, the Yasref refinery has reached its full production capacity in July 2015.

In February, Saudi Aramco had signed a framework agreement with Sinopec for strategic cooperation in enhancing the competitiveness of the crude oil supplied to it.

The firms also agreed to explore cooperation opportunities in areas including oil and gas services, refining, chemicals, crude oil supply, sales, petroleum services, petrochemical services, technology development and promotion, and new energy.

Image: The Yasref refinery reached production at full capacity in July 2015. Photo: courtesy of Yasref.