Energy: Saudi monarch wants lower oil price Casablanca, 16 July (AKI) – Greedy speculators are driving world oil prices too high and these can only be stabilised if producers and consumer countries cooperate more, Saudi Arabia’s KingĀ  has said. In a wide-ranging interview with Italian daily La Repubblica on Wednesday, the Saudi monarch denied his country wants oil prices – currently around 140 dollars a barrel – at these or higher levels. “Of course we did not and do not want the price to rise this high. It is not in our interest because it is not in the interest of the rest of the world. “Our interests and world interests are closely linked,” al-Saud said. “The stability of world oil markets is an objective shared by producers and consumers.” Bin-Abd-al-Aziz al-Saud blamed soaring oil prices on what he termed “the speculative greed of certain individuals and firms” who have exploited the spike in oil prices to amass wealth. “These people could not care less about the damage being inflicted on humanity,” he said. While OPEC (The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) has increased output, the market “has not responded positively,” the Saudi king argued. “This shows the impact of other variables than those of supply and demand. That of speculation, in particular, but also tariffs some consumer countries place on oil imports,” the monarch said. He urged closer cooperation between the G8 group of the world’s most industrialised countries and OPEC to “tackle the overall market situation.” Oil prices are likely to go higher and could hit 200 dollars a barrel, according to analysts and industry sources. Bin-Abd-al-Aziz al-Saud urged the G8 to back existing initiatives to avoid duplication of efforts. The Riyadh-based International Energy Forum (IEF) every two years gathers participants from more than 70 countries that make up over 90 percent of oil and gas production and consumption. Earlier this month, the G8 industrial nations announced the creation of a new world energy forum to respond to the threat posed to their economies by a doubling in the price of crude oil over the past year.


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