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Saudi's New Oil Boss Vows to Maintain Policy

  • Al-Falih seen sticking to policy to defend oil-market share
  • Kingdom may exceed record output level to meet summer demand
Bloomberg business news

Saudi Oil Minister Replaced: What It Means for Markets

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Saudi Arabia will probably keep producing crude at near-record levels under its newly appointed oil minister, Khalid Al-Falih, as the world’s largest exporter sticks with his predecessor’s policy of defending market share against higher-cost shale.

Al-Falih, also chairman of the state producer Saudi Arabian Oil Co., said on his first day in office on Sunday that he will maintain the kingdom’s oil policy. His predecessor, Ali al-Naimi, had been leading a policy prioritizing sales over prices since 2014, driving some higher-cost producers, including U.S. shale drillers, off the market. In so doing, Saudi Arabia boosted output, adding to a supply glut. The strategy is showing signs of succeeding this year, with prices gaining more than 60 percent since tumbling to a 12-year low in January.