State-owned oil giant Saudi Aramco doubled its profits in 2021 from the year prior as oil prices skyrocketed to keep up with demand from the post-COVID travel boom; its $105.4 billion in profits were the highest of any company in the Global 500. Oil prices climbed even further in early 2022—at one point hitting $110 per barrel—following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The surge briefly made Saudi Aramco the world’s most valuable company, ahead of Apple, and the oil giant’s market cap remained well above $2 trillion in mid-2022. The energy crisis caused by the Russia-Ukraine conflict has given the company fresh incentive to pump more oil in coming years despite government and corporate pledges to reduce reliance on fossil fuel; Saudi Aramco has said it wants to reach 13 million barrels a day by 2027.
Maya Siddiqui—Bloomberg/Getty Images
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