Gulf Oil Ministers Say IMF is Wrong About Oil Price Impact on Account Balances

Oil ministers in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Monday rebuffed concerns from the International Monetary Fund that the global slump in oil prices will have a “deteriorating” effect on Middle East countries’ current account balances.

The price of crude oil has slumped from a high of $114 a barrel last June to currently trade just below the $50-mark but oil ministers in the Middle East, where many major oil producers are located, appear sanguine about the decline.

On Monday, Saudi’s vice oil minister said long-term oil market fundamentals remain robust but prolonged low prices could threaten security of supply and pave the way for a price spike.

Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said “for a major reserve holder, oil producer and exporter such as Saudi Arabia, our focus has always been on the long-term trends shaping the oil market,” in a speech at an Asian energy conference in the Qatari capital Doha, reported by Reuters.

“Rather than being a commodity in decline, as some would like to portray, supply and demand patterns indicate that the long-term fundamentals of the oil complex remain robust,” he added.

via CNBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza