Addressing in Washington DC today a symposium on Saudi-U.S. relations and global energy security organized by the U.S.-Saudi Arabian Business Council in cooperation with the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Ali Al-Naimi reiterated the Kingdom’s commitment to oil market stability and the provision of sufficient supplies at prices reasonable for both producers and consumers, ideally between $22 and $28 a barrel. This commitment, he said, has endured, in spite of the numerous challenges faced by the energy industry over the past thirty years. Refuting the charge that Saudi oil reserves are in danger of depletion, he confirmed new discoveries of both oil and natural gas. Without any difficulty, he said, the Kingdom has the capacity to increase its production from the current 10.5 million bpd to between 12 and 15 million bpd, and to keep up this production for the next 100 years. Attributing high gasoline prices in the United States to shortage of refining capacity, he reiterated the Kingdom’s offer to invest in new U.S. refineries.
[Full text of Minister Al-Naimi’s speech]
Minister of Finance Ibrahim Al-Assaf also addressed the symposium, and called on oil consuming countries such as the United States to implement internal mechanisms for control of local fuel prices instead of depending on OPEC, since rises in these prices often have no relation to a deficit of crude oil supply in international markets.
In his speech, Chairman of Saudi Aramco Abdullah Juma’a affirmed his company's commitment to maintaining oil supplies to the global market, pointing out that the Kingdom's proven reserves of crude oil exceed 260 billion barrels in 85 oil fields, and that there are another 320 fields that have not yet been developed.
[Press release on oil minister’s speech]