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Saudi Oil Minister: $25 crude would be a "miracle"

DAVOS, Switzerland (AP)--Saudi Arabia would like to see OPEC's reverence price for oil remain constant at $25 a barrel, but the country's oil minister said Wednesday it would "be a miracle" if that happens.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, which supplies about a third of the world's oil and is led by Saudi Arabia, has said it aims to keep the price of its basket of seven crudes in a range of $22 to $28, equivalent to about $24 to $30 in New York. But futures prices have surged to more than $34 in New York, because of cold weather in the U.S. Northeast and crude oil inventories that have fallen to their lowest in almost three decades.

"We would like to see the price stay straight within the band at $25," Saudi Oil Minister Ali Naimi said. "We would be very happy. That would be a miracle if we can do it, but I don't think we will ever be able to do it."

Naimi told a group of reporters at the World Economic Forum that prices aren't the result of insufficient supply of oil in the market.

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