King Salman ibn ‘Abd Al-‘Aziz Al Sa’ud issued a Royal Order on May 7, 2016, appointing HE Ali I. Al-Naimi, former Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, as an Advisor at the Royal Court (Minister Rank).
During his tenure as oil minister for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Al-Naimi was a noted world authority on oil pricing, market stability, and energy security. He was Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources for Saudi Arabia from 1995 to 2016.
During that period, he was a primary architect of OPEC strategy. From 1995 until 2015, he was Chairman of the Kingdom’s national oil company, Saudi Aramco. He was also Chairman of the Saudi Geological Society and remains Chairman of the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST).
Al-Naimi was the Kingdom’s first minister to pursue the development of a Petroleum strategy and Gas Strategy. He oversaw a restructuring of the Kingdom’s minerals sector and he helped restructure the International Energy Forum to be a neutral, intergovernmental facilitator of producer-consumer dialogue. He has also been a champion of solar energy, and carbon capture and sequestration, in the Kingdom.
In 1984, Al-Naimi made history as the first Saudi to become president of Aramco — the company’s highest office. In 1988, Saudi Aramco was created by Royal Decree to succeed the Arabian American Oil Company, the culmination of a negotiated and managed process begun in the 1970s. Al-Naimi became CEO, a post he held until his ministerial appointment.
During his time as president and CEO of Saudi Aramco, the company reached an oil production capacity of 10 million barrels per day, established global refining and product marketing joint ventures, increased pipeline capacity, and amassed one of the world’s largest fleets of very large crude carrier ships. It also discovered high-quality Arabian Super Light crude oil and emphasized the need for education and innovation for 21st-century energy challenges.
Al-Naimi held a range of senior posts at Aramco, including vice president of Industrial Relations, Community Services, Power Systems, and Supply and Transportation. In 1977, he was acting president of Aramco Overseas Company in The Hague. He became senior vice president (Oil Operations) in 1978, and a member of Aramco’s Board of Directors in 1980. In 1982, he was promoted to executive vice president (Oil and Gas Operations), overseeing Aramco’s core business.
He holds a degree in geology from Lehigh University (Pennsylvania, U.S.), and a master’s in hydrology and geo-economics from Stanford University (California, U.S.). He also completed Columbia University Executive programs and the Harvard University Advanced Management Program.
Al-Naimi’s honors include the King Abdulaziz Sash of the Second Order; the Medal of Battle and Medal for the Liberation of Kuwait (Saudi Arabia); The Order of Industrial Service Merit, Gold Tower (South Korea); The Congressional Medal of Achievement (Philippines); and Honorary Residency, City of Abuja (Nigeria).He holds honorary doctorates from the universities of Heriot Watt (Scotland), Peking, Seoul National, the AGH University of Science and Technology (Poland), and Lehigh.