Our work in Saudi Arabia

We have been operating in this country of the Arabian Peninsula since the 1960s, in the Oil & Gas Exploration and Production sector. We have been active in the Refining and Chemicals sector since 1984 through our Ecofuel subsidiary.


In September 2022, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Investment met the CEO of Eni, Claudio Descalzi. Mr Descalzi presented the company's decarbonization strategy with a special focus on the many industrial initiatives and technologies supporting the energy technology transition. The two parties shared views about the role of Saudi Arabia based on current energy market challenges. During the meeting, it has been signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at promoting cooperation between Eni, Saudi institutions and companies mainly in the field of sustainable development around the country. The memorandum concerns cooperation areas such as the study of joint development of initiatives around sustainable mobility, circular economy and the chemicals industry.

Synthetic gas and polypropylene

In February 2019 we signed an agreement with SABIC, a major public company based in the Middle East and Saudi Arabia, with a view to jointly developing a new technology that transforms natural gas into synthetic gas for producing high-quality fuels and chemicals, including methanol. The partnership also envisages the construction of an industrial demonstration plant to be built and run at one of our sites, where we will develop the technology based on the short contact time catalytic partial oxidation of natural gas (SCT-CPO). Through Ecofuel we hold a 10% stake in the Saudi European Petrochemical Company (Ibn Zahr), founded in 1984, which has built and operates both MTBE (a high-octane component of petrol) plants with a capacity of 1.4 million tonnes per year at the Al Jubail petrochemical complex and polypropylene production plants with a capacity of 1.2 million tonnes per year. 


In the Refining & Marketing and Chemistry sector, specifically the availability of oxygenates, about 87% of them are produced in Eni’s plants in Italy (Ravenna), Saudi Arabia (in joint venture with Sabic) and Venezuela (in joint venture with Pequiven) and the remaining 13% is purchased.