Saudi violated OPEC pact under USA pressure: Iran

Brent oil holds near $80 as Saudi Arabia plans output increase

The United States can not stop Iranian oil exports by imposing sanctions on Tehran, Iran's oil minister said on Tuesday, warning that such restrictions will ensure the market remains volatile.

The kingdom, which produces more than a tenth of global supplies, had vowed on Monday not to withhold its output as a political weapon amid the worldwide backlash over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Top crude oil exporter Saudi Arabia has pledged to keep markets supplied despite its increasing isolation over the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

He added there is NO guarantee that oil prices would not go higher once anti-Iran sanctions come into force next month.

Oil traded at its lowest in more than a month after Saudi Arabia reiterated plans to raise output and as tumbling equities weakened sentiment.

Speaking to Russia's TASS news agency about whether there could be a 1973-style oil embargo on the West, which saw petrol prices rocket after Saudi Arabia slapped countries including the United States with a ban, Mr Falih said: "There is no intention". And Saudi Arabia has been consistent in its policy.

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih told a conference in Riyadh that the oil market was in a "good place" and the kingdom would "continue with the mindset we have now, which is to meet any demand that materializes to ensure customers are satisfied".

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US light crude dropped $3.03, or 4.4 percent, to $66.33 a barrel, after earlier hitting a two-month low at $65.74.

"The market's knowledge of this disability has led to an increase in oil prices, with the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) and Brent North Sea average rising from $67 and $77 in May to $74 and $84 per barrel respectively in October", he said. "We work to stabilize global markets and to facilitate global economic growth", he added. "So we have to use oil reserves".

"We have just upgraded our price forecasts for 2019 Brent by $20.5 per barrel to $83.5 per barrel", the U.S. bank said, adding that this "bullish argument is strongly driven by tighter supply due to Iranian sanctions and declining spare capacity".

"We export as much as two barrels for any barrel that disappeared from Iran recently".

There has been concern that just as markets tighten with the start of the USA sanctions against Iran, Saudi Arabia could cut crude supply in retaliation for potential sanctions against it over the Khashoggi killing. He added that Riyadh had capacity to increase output to 12 million bpd and Gulf OPEC ally, the United Arab Emirates, could add a further 200,000 bpd.

"Equities are weighing on oil prices", said UBS Group AG analyst Giovanni Staunovo.

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