Saudi prince not happy with new US energy discoveries

Saudi prince not happy with new US energy discoveries
Wed Jan 8, 2014 11:39:29

Saudi Arabia’s Prince al-Waleed Bin Talal, the grandson of King Abdulazziz, says that new shale oil discoveries “are threats to any oil-producing country in the world.”

“It is a pivot moment for any oil-producing country that has not diversified. Ninety-two percent of Saudi Arabia’s annual budget comes from oil. Definitely it is a worry and a concern,” Talal said in an interview with The Globe and Mail.

Prince al-Waleed has been warning about the threat posed by fracking shale in places such as the United States and Russia for some time.

Back in May 2013, in an open letter to the Saudi oil minister, Ali al-Naimi, Prince al-Waleed said, “With all due respect to your Highness’ viewpoint about shale gas and that it poses no danger on Saudi economy at ‘the present time,’ I was hoping that your Highness would also shed light and focus on the danger of this matter in the ‘not-so-distant future,’ especially that America and some Asian countries made big discoveries in shale gas extraction which will affect the oil industry around the world in general and Saudi Arabia in particular.”

"It is necessary to diversify sources of revenue, establish a clear vision for that and start implementing it immediately,” said the prince, adding, “we see that raising North American shale gas production is an inevitable threat.”

The boom, which has cut the need for foreign oil, is pushing America toward energy independence. By 2015, the International Energy Agency (IEA) predicts the boom will make America the largest oil producer in the world.

The shale oil threat means Saudi Arabia will not be able to raise its production capacity to 15 million barrels of oil per day, Prince al-Waleed argued in a July warning.


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