Saudi Arabia’s energy chief says falling oil prices are just the result of speculators.
Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said: “It’s not weak. People pretend it is. It’s all a tactic.”
Saudi Arabia has vowed to cut crude oil production by 1 million barrels per day by the end of this year.
Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said that oil demand is not weak and that the drop in oil prices is just the behavior of speculators.
Brent crude, the international benchmark, has fallen 17% from its recent peak in September and was trading around $81 a barrel on Friday.
“It is not weak,” Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman told a news conference in Saudi Arabia on Thursday. According to Bloomberg“People pretend it’s weak. It’s all a tactic.”
He added that market participants may confuse rising Middle East oil exports in recent months with rising oil production.
The energy chief explained that shipments are seasonal and tend to increase in October, but that doesn’t necessarily mean production will increase.
“This is a misuse of numbers,” he said.
Saudi Arabia, the de facto leader of the OPEC+ cartel, has been slashing crude output to boost prices, senior officials have previously said Complaints affected by market distortions.
In addition to OPEC’s production cuts, Saudi Arabia has also issued its own production reduction agreement Voluntary production reduction of 1 million barrels per day The period will be extended to the end of this year.
This briefly caused crude oil prices to surge to near $100 a barrel in September, although oil prices Some relief in recent weeks That could weigh on economic growth and hamper demand amid mixed demand prospects across Chinese banks and rising central bank interest rates around the world.
Still, some industry forecasts are bullish on oil in the long term due to underinvestment and the possibility of undersupply. Oil prices could soar to $150 a barrel A shale oil executive said.
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