Khalid al-Falih, the new Saudi Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Ministry, is sworn in by Saudi King Salman (not seen) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia May 9, 2016. Saudi Press Agency/Handout via REUTERS
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Saudi Arabia will probably keep producing crude at near-record levels under its newly appointed oil minister, Khalid al-Falih, as the world's largest exporter sticks with his predecessor's policy of defending market share against higher-cost shale.In so doing, Saudi Arabia boosted output, adding to a supply glut. The strategy is showing signs of succeeding this year, with prices gaining more than 60 percent since tumbling to a 12-year low in January. Saudi Arabia could exceed its record output of more than 10.5 million daily barrels if it pumps more to meet a seasonal surge in domestic demand during the summer months, analysts from Emirates NBD PJSC and Qamar Energy said. The country, with the world's second-largest oil reserves, pumped 10.27 million barrels a day in April. Non-OPEC supply is poised to slip about 700,000 barrels a day this year, while demand is forecast to rise about 1.2 million barrels daily, according to the International Energy Agency.Analysts suggested Falih may take a harder line in upholding the Saudi market-share policy within OPEC.
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