UK and Saudi energy ministers will meet today and call on international energy markets to recognise that the high price of oil does not reflect the realities of supply and demand in the market.
In his first visit to the Middle East since taking office, UK Energy and Climate Change Secretary The Rt Hon Chris Huhne MP will meet with Saudi Oil Minister Ali Ibrahim Al-Naimi.
Oil prices have remained above $100 since late-January, and fluctuated over the past month at around $115 following unrest in Libya. This is despite there being no global shortage of oil. There is sufficient supply to meet consumer demand.
Mr Huhne said:
“With oil prices at more than $115 a barrel there could be no more important time to be in Saudi Arabia, whose response to events in recent months has been crucial for keeping the market supplied to meet global demand.
“There is no shortage of supply, and yet the price has remained high. International energy markets should understand that the current price of oil does not reflect the realities of supply and demand.
“Building greater understanding between consumer and producer countries is more important than ever in these present circumstances.”
While in Riyadh, Mr Huhne also met Dr Hashim Yamani, the Head of the King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy to discuss the development of renewable energy in Saudi Arabia and the expertise British companies can provide as Saudi Arabia develops its renewable energy sector.
On Wednesday and Thursday he will be in Abu Dhabi, UAE for the second Clean Energy Ministerial where he will push for progress on international collaboration on CCS.
“Just as we work together to ensure oil market stability, the international community also needs to collaborate to speed up the deployment of clean energy technologies. My discussions with green energy investors and with my counterparts at the Clean Energy Ministerial are crucial to this.”