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The Saudi government has assumed the responsibility of rebalancing the global oil markets and pushing crude prices back up.Even worse for Saudi Arabia, the kingdom has no backup plan for its current energy policy if prices do not rise again and the agreement falters.For over 20 years, Petroleum and Mineral Resources Minister Ali al-Naimi's policy was to play a passive role in global oil markets, having learned from Saudi Arabia's failure to defend OPEC prices in the 1980s. Taking a leadership role and bearing the largest burden of production cuts, Saudi Arabia under Falih is largely betting that oil markets will rebalance themselves, with supply reducing to match demand and pushing prices to a new, higher equilibrium.When oil prices declined in 2015, industry experts blamed Saudi Arabia for driving oil prices down, accusing it of flooding the international markets with excess crude production. Saudi policymakers do not seem to realize that they do not and cannot control oil prices.
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