LONDON Ñ Saudi Arabia has assured the West that the kingdom
could significantly increase crude oil production.
Saudi Oil Minister Ali Al Naimi said the kingdom has enough capacity to
nearly double its current oil output. Riyad pumps nine million barrels of
oil per day, Middle East Newsline reported.
"We have enough resources to raise our production in the medium term to
12 or 16 million [barrels per day]," Al Naimi said in an interview with the
German weekly Der Spiegel. "In the north of the country, in the Red Sea and
the Empty Quarter there are areas which we have not yet intensively
The Saudi minister said the price of oil, which exceeded the $40 a mark,
was too high. He said the kingdom has sought to maintain OPEC's official
price at between $22 and $28.