Saudi Arabia seeks to support stability, balance of global oil markets: King Salman

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Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz said that the Kingdom seeks to support the stability of global oil markets, in a wide-ranging speech on Monday.

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“Our country is working hard within its energy strategy to support the stability and balance of global oil markets,” King Salman said, as reported by the Saudi Press Agency, “as petroleum is an important element in supporting the growth of the global economy.

OPEC+ members also issued statements early on Monday to support the King’s declaration, after the White House accused Saudi Arabia of coercing members into supporting the decision to cut oil production.

United Arab Emirates energy minister Suhail al-Mazrouei said on Twitter: “I would like to clarify that the latest OPEC+ decision, which was unanimously approved, was a pure technical decision, with NO political intentions whatsoever.”

Iraq’s oil marketer SOMO also published a statement saying: “There is complete consensus among OPEC+ countries that the best approach in dealing with the oil market conditions during the current period of uncertainty and lack of clarity is a pre-emptive approach that supports market stability and provides the guidance needed for the future.”

Kuwait Petroleum Corporation Chief Executive Officer Nawaf Saud al-Sabah welcomed the decision in a statement, state news agency KUNA reported.

Oman and Bahrain issued separate statements confirming that OPEC had unanimously agreed on the reduction, and Algeria’s energy minister called the decision “historic” and expressed his full confidence in it, Algeria’s Ennahar TV reported.

Saudi Arabia will continue to develop newly-discovered natural gas fields throughout the country, as well as targeting carbon neutrality and cutting emissions by 278 million tons annually by 2030, he added.

Speaking via video link to inaugurate the meeting of the Shura Council advisory body, King Salman also said that the Kingdom is a mediator for peace, highlighting Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s initiative to release prisoners of war from Russia.

King Salman urged Iran to fulfil its nuclear commitments, and to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The King highlighted the rapid developments taking place in Saudi Arabia, noting that the country is moving into the second phase of Vision 2030 reforms that begun in 2016.

Projects of particular importance include the NEOM, AlUla, and Diriyah developments, which he said will improve the life of citizens while protecting Saudi heritage.

Other national priorities included the national investment strategy, financing for SMEs, the national artificial intelligence strategy, tourism development of the Asir region, and the recently-announced gaming strategy, he said.

Womens’ role in Saudi professional life has been “crystallized,” King Salman said, with many women taking on leadership roles in private and government institutions.

The Saudi King tackled a number of regional and international issues.

On Yemen, King Salman reiterated the Kingdom’s support to all efforts that can contribute to a permanent ceasefire and initiate a political process between the Yemeni government and the Iran-backed Houthi militia.

He also voiced the importance of ending the Houthis’ “provocative violations” in Yemen.

Regarding Lebanon, the King said it was important to implement comprehensive political and economic reforms that help the country overcome its crisis.

“It’s also important for the government to impose its authority on all Lebanese territories to [maintain] security and confront drug smuggling operations and terrorist activities which are launched from there and which threaten the region’s stability and security.”

With Reuters

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