Gas prices are policy failures

The surge in oil prices is being driven by political factors and there is no need for additional crude supplies, Saudi Arabia’s assistant oil minister said.

‘We have always said, and OPEC has always committed itself to keep the market well-supplied and balanced. Never has this market been (more) balanced with crude than today,’ said Prince Abdul Aziz, who is assistant oil minister for petroleum affairs.

While there was no need for additional crude supplies, there is a problem with refining capacity. He was referring to what Saudi officials say is a need to invest in expanding refining capacity in consumer countries. Thomson Financial

To stimulate a bit of thinking about oil players instead of merely blaming Arabs, what’s at least 13% of British Petroleum’s reserves — nudging BP ahead of Shell, to become the No 2 behind Exxon Mobil? Russia.