Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said on Tuesday that the goal of the OPEC+ alliance - which includes members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and major oil producers - was to hedge against possible scenarios in the future.
Addressing the Qatar Economic Forum, which is organized by Bloomberg, the energy minister stressed that the alliance would continue to be proactive, preemptive and hedge against what may come in the future.
“We should be brave enough to attend to the future without continuing the so-called 'kicking the can' policies, those policies that may allow us to fend the situation for this month, next month or the month after but with that we are losing sight of our intentions and our more important objectives,” he said.
About speculations in the oil market, Prince Abdulaziz said: “Speculators, like in any market, are there to stay. I keep advising them that they will be ouching, they did ouch in April, I don’t have to show my cards... but I would just tell them watch out.”
In his speech, the minister touched on the hydrogen sector, and said that there were no clear policies for investors regarding this sector.
“There is no clear policy in this regard... How can we talk about future energy when the vision is not clear?” he asked.
Saudi Arabia, along with other OPEC+ producers, have announced sudden voluntary cuts in production in April, which led to a rise in prices after a recession led by fears of the impact of a banking crisis on demand.
Members of the OPEC+ coalition will meet on June 4 in Vienna to decide on the next course of action.
The Saudi minister said that the coalition will continue to work proactively, preventively, and hedge against what might come in the future, regardless of any criticism.
He again blamed the Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA) and its initial predictions for a 3 million barrel per day (bpd) fall in Russian production over the Ukraine war for misleading the market.
“Look who did the most in trying to bring forecasts and data and projections that really created most of the volatility that we have had in 2022 and continue to do so?” Prince Abdulaziz said. “There is an organization called the IEA, I think they have proven that it really takes special talent to be consistently wrong.”