Saudi energy minister says oil glut has vanished


Saudi Arabia's new energy minister said the supply glut that kindled crippling oil rout around the world and thrashed Houston's biggest business for two years has finally vanished.

"We are out of it," Khalid Al-Falih said in his first one-on-one interview since his rise to the most powerful job in the global energy industry last month. "The oversupply has disappeared. We just have to carry the overhang of inventory for a while until the system works it out."

Falih, Texas A&M University graduate and former Saudi Aramco chief executive, replaced the long-time Saudi oil policymaker Ali al-Naimi in May. He was in Houston this week to visit Saudi Aramco operations here and attend a religious ceremony at Houston's Museum of Fine Arts.
Two years and day after U.S. oil price peaked at $107 barrel, he sketched out the end of the world's oil surplus and the beginning of a new chapter in the cyclical energy business in an exclusive interview with the Houston Chronicle.

Prices tumbled as low as $26 a barrel in February in the biggest oil-market crash since the 1980's. Texas alone has lost 100,000 jobs since the slide in prices began in the summer of 2014. But countries like India and parts of Asia have a bigger appetite for oil now, Falih said, while crude production in the United States, Nigeria and other regions has fallen, closing the 1 million-barrel a day gap between supply and demand. (by Collin Easton, Houston Chronicle)