Saudi Oil Minister Praises Trump's Energy Policy, Welcomes Increased US Production

Regolare Commento Stampare

Appreciating Trump's oil and gas policies, the minister said Saudi Arabia had invested billions of dollars in the American oil industry, adding that the investment may increase, depending on the "pro-industry, pro-oil and gas policy of the Trump administration".

Mr Falih added that the Saudis, the world's biggest oil exporters, are not "foes" of the United States administration and that there are "huge areas of alignment" between the two nations.

"President Trump has policies which are good for the oil industries and I think we have to acknowledge it. He has steered away from excessively anti-fossil fuels - unrealistic policies", Falih said.

OPEC's biggest oil producer plans to build 300 megawatts of solar plants in the al-Jouf area in northern Saudi Arabia and 400 megawatts of wind projects in nearby Tabuk, he said.

"I think he wants a mixed energy portfolio that includes oil, gas, renewables, and make sure that the American economy is competitive". Saudi Arabia is the world's largest crude exporter and pumps the most oil among the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

Last year Saudi Arabia unveiled sweeping plans aiming to end the kingdom's "addiction" to oil and transform it into a global investment power through a broad reform plan dubbed Vision 2030.

"The relationship between (the US and) Saudi Arabia is very, very strong", Falih said in Wednesday's broadcast.

The document indicated Mr Trump' environmental policies will join up with his economic ones, by encouraging more spending in the USA economy and allowing the U.S. to achieve energy independence from the OPEC.

Trump and Saudi Arabia's King Salman spoke by telephone on Sunday, agreeing to step up counter-terrorism and military cooperation and enhance economic relations, a senior Saudi source told Reuters.