Saudi oil minister - then and now
Saudi Oil Minister in April, 2004
... “Saudi Arabia now has 1.2 trillion barrels of estimated reserve. This estimate is very conservative. Our analysis gives us reason to be very optimistic. We are continuing to discover new resources, and we are using new technologies to extract even more oil from existing reserves,” [Saudi Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Ali Al-Naimi] said.
Naimi said Saudi Arabia is committed to sustaining the average price of $25 per barrel set by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. He said prices should never increase to more than $28 or drop under $22. “This is a fair price to consumers and producers. But, really, Saudi Arabia and OPEC has limited control on world markets,” said Al-Naimi. “Prices are driven by other factors: Instability in key oil producing countries; industry struggles to produce specialized gasoline; and the resulting strains on refineries to meet local demand.”
... “Saudi Arabia’s vast oil reserves are certainly there,” Naimi added. “None of these reserves requires advanced recovery techniques. We have more than sufficient reserves to increase output. If required, we can increase output from 10.5 million barrels a day to 12-15 million barrels a day. And we can sustain this increased output for 50 years or more. There will be no shortage of oil for the next 50 years. Perhaps much longer.”
Tim Kennedy, Arab News
29 April 2004
Saudi Oil Minister in March, 2012
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia must reduce its reliance on crude sales revenues and develop its downstream industry to shield its economy from international market volatility, the kingdom's oil minister said on Tuesday . . .
... "In light of such unpredictable fluctuations, it is not appropriate to depend on the production and export of oil as a basis for national income and sustainable economic development," he said.
Reuters via Business Record
March 2, 2012
Graph courtesy Jeffrey J. Brown