Saudi Arabia's oil minister Ali al-Naimi: 'Only Allah can set the price of oil'

The minister’s comments come amid slump in oil prices and slowing growth

Saudi Arabia’s oil minister has turned to divinity over the issue of slumping prices in oil, claiming that “it’s up to Allah”.

Speaking to CNBC, oil minister Ali al-Naimi said that “no one can set the price of oil – it’s up to Allah”.

Saudi Arabia is the world’s biggest producer of oil and, while oil prices have been staying low on the market, the country has decided to increase its production of the substance rather than cut it.

Sanctions currently placed on Iran could soon be lifted as part of international nuclear negotiations, which would mean the country’s crude oil would come back on to the market and cause prices to plunge further.

But al-Naimi told the broadcaster he was not worried about this possibility.

His comments come amid speculation of how the country will maintain its decision not to cut oil production.

Oil prices jumped in January following the death of the Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, though his death served as a catalyst for further uncertainty across energy markets.

In December, amid plummeting crude oil prices, Al-Naimi said he was “100 per cent not pleased” with the price situation but remained confident the market would improve.

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