Saudi oil minister Ali al-Naimi said on Monday the high price of crude was not justified by market fundamentals, stressing that supply and demand are balanced.
“Saudi Arabia is concerned about rising oil prices in the international oil market. The current high price of oil is simply not supported by market fundamentals,” he said in a statement.
“The market is well balanced, forward cover remains within an acceptable range and inventories are more than adequate,” Naimi added.
He said the oil-rich kingdom remains ready to ensure adequate supply of oil to the international market.
“Saudi Arabia will, as always, take all necessary steps to ensure the market is well supplied and to help moderate prices -- and we will meet any additional demand from our customers,” he said.
“We will continue to work in collaboration with other Gulf Cooperation Council nations, and with OPEC to defend the stability of the oil market,” he added.
Oil prices were mixed in Asia Monday as traders balanced US stimulus hopes with disappointing Chinese industrial output numbers, analysts said.
New York’s main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in October, shed 26 cents to $96.16 a barrel while Brent North Sea crude for October delivery gained 15 cents to $114.40.