Saudi Energy Minister says energy shipping lanes must be kept open

Credit: REUTERS/MAXIM SHEMETOV

Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Monday that it is very important for the world's economy to keep shipping lanes open for oil and other energy supplies after tanker attacks in the Middle East last week.

TOKYO, June 17 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Monday that it is very important for the world's economy to keep shipping lanes open for oil and other energy supplies after tanker attacks in the Middle East last week.

He said that the all countries need to cooperate on the issue to ensure stable supplies. He did not outline any concrete steps being taken after the attacks that damaged two tankers on June 13.

Al Falih also said that he expects the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other producers including Russia to meet in the first week of July to discuss an extension of a supply output cut agreement.

He said OPEC was moving was towards a consensus on extending the agreement.

Oil demand growth has held up despite trade disputes roiling global markets, al Falih said, adding he expects worldwide demand to be above 100 million barrels per day this year.

(Reporting by Yuka Obayashi and Aaron Sheldrick; editing by Christian Schmollinger)

((Yuka.Obayashi@thomsonreuters.com; +813-6441-1798; Reuters Messaging: yuka.obayashi.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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