Oil prices reach six-week high Tuesday


Saudi Arabia's new energy minister said his country wants to pursue a "full cycle" nuclear program, which would entail the kingdom processing and enriching its own uranium. -China trade war and increasing USA supplies. It is being speculated that he will maintain policy similar to predecessor al-Falih, who greenlit the aforementioned production cut deal. The surge in US shale production over the last five year has put Saudi Arabia and its allies on the back foot, forced to concede market share to shore up prices.

Aramco is "ready" for the IPO but the timing is a "government decision", Amin Nasser told reporters on the sidelines of the World Energy Congress in Abu Dhabi.

Prince Abdulaziz's appointment as Energy minister underscores the key challenges being faced by Saudi Arabia as the country is mired in uncertainty over the future prices of its crude and oil, as well as a sluggish shift to a more diversified global entity.

"The change at the helm of the Energy Ministry holds the potential to focus on further supporting oil prices, in line with budgetary or domestic purposes", Jean-Michael Sallba, Bank of America Merrill Lynch MENA economist/strategist, wrote from London. "In particular, tension between the U.S. and Iran/Venezuela continues to impact the market".

Prices on Monday were also supported by a rise in oil imports in China in August, with shipments to the world's biggest importer up 3% from July and almost 10% higher in the first eight months of 2019 from a year earlier.

Prince Abdulaziz, half-brother to de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is the first member of the royal family ever put in charge of the kingdom's all-important energy ministry.

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"Gasoline stocks fell by 682,000 barrels, slightly less than expected, whilst distillate stocks increased unexpectedly by 2.7 million barrels", said Carsten Fritsch, oil analyst at Commerzbank AG in Frankfurt, Germany.

Saudi Arabia's King Salman over the weekend dismissed Khalid Al-Falih as the energy minister of the Opec (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) and replaced him with one of his sons.

Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman can be seen embracing his brother, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, after giving his oath at the Red Sea port of Jedda. The most recent previous high was reached July 31.

Speaking to Middle East Eye earlier this year, Ali Bakeer, a Turkey-based political analyst, said: "A nuclear Saudi Arabia means nuclear proliferation in the most unstable and volatile region of the world".

OPEC has pointed to rising global production next year. He also added that the so-called OPEC+ alliance between OPEC and non-member countries like Russian Federation will continue their partnership for a long time.

RRPCL is a joint venture between Saudi Aramco, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc), and three state-run oil marketing companies (OMCs) - Indian Oil Corporation (IOCL), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL) and Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL).