MARCH 19 2012 16:25h
Riyadh: High crude production to persist
Ali al-Naimi, the oil ministry of Saudi Arabia, said last week at the International Energy Forum in Kuwait that the country could make up for any "perceived or real" shortfalls in the oil market.
Saudi Arabia gave assurances to its Asian costumers recently that it would make up for efforts to lower their imports of Iranian crude oil. Iran has threatened to cut off some oil customers in response to Western-backed sanctions imposed as a result of the Iranian nuclear program.
Tensions in the region are in part to blame for rising crude oil prices. Riyadh, in data submitted to the Joint Organization Data Initiative, pumped more than 9.8 million barrels per day in January, its second highest level since 1980, Bloomberg News reports.
Jarmo Kotilaine, chief economist at the National Commercial Bank, in Jeddah, told Bloomberg that high production levels "may persist for some time" because of global market tensions.
JODI statistics indicate Saudi Arabia produced 0.6 percent more crude oil in January than it did in December. Crude oil shipments increased from 7.36 million bpd in December to 7.51 million bpd in January, the data indicate.
JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia, March 19 (UPI) -- Record-setting oil production from Saudi Arabia is expected to persist because of tensions in the global energy market, a Saudi economist said.