Today, Sarawak Report proves conclusively once and for all that PetroSaudi is owned by Prince Turki bin Abdullah Al Saud.
In fact, Sarawak Report itself wrote the caption for picture as thus: “From left to right are Prince Turki, the owner of PetroSaudi; Jho Low, the mastermind of the joint venture; Prime Minister Najib Razak, the man in sole charge of 1MDB; his all powerful wife Rosmah Mansor; the couple’s son, Nor Ashman; Tarek Obaid, the Director of PetroSaudi and Rosmah’s favoured daughter, Nooryana Najwa.”
In this meeting, King Abdullah Abdulaziz Al Saud had expressed the possibility of Saudi Arabia participating actively in Malaysia in the Islamic banking sector, expanding participation in the Islamic services and product manufacturing sectors and also raising its equity in the country.
1MDB never hid Jho Low’s early involvement but his involvement soon ended.
Out of respect for the Sultan of Terengganu and the then YDP Agong, who was the one who asked Jho Low to set up TIA (which was then renamed 1MDB) and act as adviser — specialising in Middle-East relationships which Jho Low was good at and had earlier proven a success — way before TIA or 1MDB existed and way before Najib became Prime Minister, 1MDB just did not want to publicise this fact much due to sensitivities among some Malays.
However, as far as I know, Jho Low never had any formal position once TIA became 1MDB nor was he paid any salary or was put on any formal employment contracts or advisory positions.
PM Najib never said he does not know Jho Low.
It would be quite ridiculous for him to even say he doesn’t know Jho Low since Jho Low has been quite famous since 2007 and 2008 when he and his Middle East partners bought out two listed companies in Malaysia — Loh & Loh Bhd and also PutraJaya Perdana — and took a controlling shareholding in listed RM1.7b company UBG Group in 2008, even before 1MDB came into existence.
This pic again proves that. Not sure what is Sarawak Report‘s purpose was to release this. It’s counter-productive to them.
After meeting with Prince Turki and Najib, Prince Turki wrote officially on his royal letterhead to PM Najib to proceed further with the joint collaboration between Saudi Arabia and Malaysia, in the guise of PetroSaudi and 1MDB.
Prince Turki’s letter enclosed PetroSaudi’s CEO letter addressed to PM Najib, too — which specifically mentioned the meeting between Prince Turki, King Abdullah and Najib.
PetroSaudi has the full backing of the Saudi Arabia government, as can be seen in this 2010 letter from their embassy which states that this joint venture will improve the relationship between both countries.
Petrosaudi’s own bank, Banque Saudi Fransi, also testifies to the ownership of PetroSaudi and their financial strength.
Banque Saudi Fransi (BSF) (Arabic: البنك السعودي الفرنسي) is a Saudi Joint Stock Company established by Saudi Arabia Royal Decree No. M/23 dated June 4, 1977.
Saudi government-owned bank confirming Prince Turki and Tarek are owners of PetroSaudi and confirming their financial strength.
Not long after this boat trip and photos, the 1MDB-PetroSaudi JV was thus set up.
“I consider this a manifestation of the close relations enjoyed between Saudi Arabia and Malaysia, and it symbolises a huge potential for us to cooperate in various fields, not only in the common interest of the two countries but also for the benefit of the larger Muslim community,” said Najib then.
Regardless of Jho Low’s presence in this meeting, PM Najib did the right thing as he was asked by King Abdullah to do business with his prince’s company as part of Saudi Arabia-Malaysia collaboration, which is supported by the Royal Saudi embassy and 1MDB got back all their money and made a decent profit — above their cost of funds.
It would be quite ridiculous that PetroSaudi owner, the future governor of Riyadh, Prince Turki, the seventh blood son of the then King Abdullah — the custodian of the two holy mosques and the absolute ruler of Saudi Arabia — would want to pakat (join) with Jho Low to cheat Malaysia of US$1 billion.
After all, Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest oil producer and exporter with a GDP more than twice the size of Malaysiaand forex reserves of US$280 billion.
Saudi Arabia and the royal family are not hard up for money at all.
Sometimes, I am amazed how Sarawak Report and the Opposition can get so many people to believe the absolutely ridiculous story that the son of the absolute king of wealthy Saudi Arabia would collude with a foreign Malaysian Chinese man to cheat Malaysia of US$1 billion.
And true enough — 1MDB got back every single ringgit they invested and made as much as US$500 million (RM1.8 billion) from this joint venture in three short years — a fact that has been audited by two separate international audit firms KPMG and Deloitte over 4 years and shall be confirmed once again by our Auditor-General in their special audit — with full documentation and proof, too.
By the way, thank you to Sarawak Report for helping finally confirm in pictures (assuming not edited by Xavier Justo) that this is indeed a true government-to-government deal. Banyak terima kasih.