Saudi Arabia is satisfied with current crude prices as well as global supply and demand levels, its oil minister said Monday, indicating OPEC will freeze its output ceiling.
"The market is in the best position it can be," Saudi Arabia's Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi told reporters in Vienna ahead of a meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries on Wednesday to decide on production.
"Demand is great, economic growth is improving," said Naimi, who represents the world's biggest producer of crude oil.
OPEC's dozen member nations from the Middle East, Africa and Latin America together produce about one third of the world's crude and have an output ceiling of 30 million barrels per day.
"Supply and demand are in equilibrium, inventories are in a good position," Naimi said on Monday in the Austrian capital, where OPEC is headquartered.
"We are at the right price right now? The price is market decided. We're happy with whatever the market determines," he added.
Saudi Arabia argues that crude at current prices averaging $100 per barrel provide acceptable income for producers without weighing too heavily on consumers.
[Image via Agence France-Presse]