Due to higher oil prices, Saudi Aramco announced a record net profit of $48.4 billion for the second quarter of the year, a 90% increase over the same period last year. The Saudi national energy giant reported an $87.9 billion profit for the first half of 2022. Free cash flow was $34.6 billion in the second quarter and $65.2 billion in the first half of 2022.

The company stated that it produced 13.6 million barrels of oil equivalent per day on average during the reporting period and reiterated its intention to increase its capacity to produce crude oil, or what it refers to as “Maximum Sustainable Capacity,” from 12 million bpd to 13 million bpd by 2027.

Commenting in the report, the Chief Executive of Aramco, Amin Nasser, said: “While global market volatility and economic uncertainty remain, events during the first half of this year support our view that ongoing investment in our industry is essential — both to help ensure markets remain well supplied and to facilitate an orderly energy transition.”

“In fact, we expect oil demand to continue to grow for the rest of the decade, despite downward economic pressures on short-term global forecasts,” he added.

The goal of increasing the maximum capacity from 12 to 13 million bpd is clear, even if the extent of Saudi Arabia’s spare production capacity has only been the subject of speculation and has not been independently verified.

A recent declaration by Crown Prince Mohammed, who stated publicly earlier this year that the Kingdom would not be able to grow its production capacity to more than 13 million bpd, has added clarity to the aim of Saudi Arabia’s potential to deliver more oil.