• Comments made ahead of December Opec meeting
  • “Let market do its job” says Al-Falih

Saudi Arabia is unlikely to shift its oil production and export policy amid continuing low crude prices, comments from Saudi Aramco’s chairman indicate.

The kingdom has increased its oil production since the price started to drop over a year ago, despite calls from fellow Opec members to support the price by cutting output.

“The only thing to do now is to let the market do its job,” Khalid al-Falih, chairman of state-owned Aramco told the Financial Times newspaper.  “There have been no conversations here that say we should cut production now that we’ve seen the pain.”

Brent crude is on course for average price of less than $55 a barrel in 2015, the lowest price for ten years and down from $98.89 last year.

The comments come ahead of the 4 December meeting of Opec leaders in Vienna, where other members of the 12-country organisation including Iraq, Iran and Algeria, are thought to be pushing for action to support prices.

“$100 oil was perceived as a guarantee of no risk for investment. Now, the insurance policy that’s been provided free of charge by Saudi Arabia does not exist anymore,” said Al-Falih.