Saudi and Gulf states ready for oil shortages
Saudi Arabian oil minister Ali al Naimi reiterated on Sunday that the kingdom, along with its Persian Gulf neighbours, will step up to cover any shortages in the world oil markets.
“If there is any shortage of oil anywhere in the world, the Gulf countries led by Saudi Arabia will cover this shortage,” Naimi told reporters on the sidelines of an industry event here.
“Saudi Arabia adjusts its output on demand, not prices,” he added.
“It is not about Saudi Arabia being content about oil prices, it is about consumers, and I think consumers are happy today, which is being shown in their statement and the slight improvement in the global economy,” he said.
He said if the “global economy is doing better than it was in March, then I’m happy with the current price (of oil).” Naimi had earlier said that his country and other OPEC members have helped support the global economy by ensuring the international oil market remains well supplied and the oil price doesn’t get out of control.
Echoing comments made by his Iraqi and UAE peers, the minister said on Sunday that the oil market was well balanced, and inventory levels comfortable.
“The market really is in a good shape. We are very happy with the situation in the market,” Mr. Naimi said.
Saudi Arabia is on track to surpass its record oil output this year, offsetting a decline from Iran because of international sanctions against Tehran’s nuclear programme.
Earlier on Sunday, Naimi said that the kingdom currently produces around 9.7 million barrels of crude oil a day, maintaining the levels from October and September.