Saudi Aramco deal almost wrecked by fake news

KUALA LUMPUR: The US$7 billion (RM31.06 billion) Saudi Aramco deal was almost wrecked by fake news that propagated the idea that the country is on the verge of bankruptcy, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

"Would Saudi Aramco be making one of its largest investments in a country that was going bankrupt?" Najib asked this question in his keynote address at the Global Transformation Forum here today.

"This running down of Malaysia is nothing less than economic sabotage for selfish, personal political gain. If it affected perceptions abroad, it won't be opposition politicians who will suffer. It will be ordinary Malaysians," said Najib.

Saudi Arabian oil company Saudi Aramco is investing US$7 billion in the Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (Rapid) project. An agreement was reached between Aramco and Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) last month in developing the project in Pengerang, Johor. Rapid is part of Petronas' Pengerang Integrated Complex.