Ban welcomes move by Saudi King to tackle ‘abnormally high’ oil prices
King Abdullah “acknowledged that the current oil price is abnormally high, due to speculative factors, and he is willing to do what he can to manage the price of oil to the adequate level,” Mr. Ban told reporters in Jeddah yesterday following meetings with the Saudi monarch and other officials.
“I am grateful that the King intends to convene a high-level meeting of major oil producers and consumers on this issue next week in the Kingdom,” he added. “We also expect that His Majesty the King and his Government will take the necessary measures to stabilize the price of oil.”
Saudi Arabia has also reportedly announced it will increase its oil production by 200,000 barrels a day starting next month in an effort to deal with the growing demand.
The Secretary-General, who was on a two-day visit to the Kingdom, said oil prices have had a major impact on the rising cost of food, a concern expressed by a number of world leaders during a recent summit held in Rome to discuss the global food crisis.
It has also “weakened our capacity to address climate change issues,” he noted, adding that the issues of food costs, fuel prices and climate change should be addressed in a comprehensive manner.