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Saudi Arabia says its oil policy based on economic principles

Saudi Arabia pressed OPEC last week into refusing to cut oil supply

Published: Updated:

Saudi Arabia's cabinet said on Monday the kingdom's oil policy is based on economic principles that achieve the interests of producers and consumers and that it was pleased with OPEC's decision to keep its output ceiling unchanged.

“The cabinet stressed that the Kingdom's oil policy is emanating from economic fundamentals, to achieve the economic interests of the Kingdom on the short and long term, and the interests of producers and consumers,” state news agency SPA reported, citing a weekly cabinet statement.

The cabinet called for cooperation against market speculators and said the OPEC decision “reflects the cohesion of the organization and unity, and foresight, which is something that is of particular importance for the Kingdom,” according to the statement.

On Thursday, Saudi Arabia's oil minister told fellow OPEC members they must combat the U.S. shale oil boom, arguing against cutting crude output in order to depress prices and undermine the profitability of North American producers.

Oil hit a fresh four-year low beneath $70 per barrel on Friday. A boom in shale oil production and weaker growth in China and Europe have sent prices down by over a third since June.