Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi, in a recent interview with MEES, laid out a hardball ‘whatever it takes’ strategy for OPEC to defend market share even at the expense of lower prices. But would this bold new policy survive a change of leadership in the kingdom?

Saudi Arabian King ‘Abd Allah was admitted to hospital on 31 December for medical tests, according to an official announcement by the royal court. The Saudi monarch, who is believed to be 91 years old, may have been absent from public life in the past three years, but has remained fully in charge despite cutting back on his working hours. His half brother, Prince Salman, took over much of the king’s official functions after he was named crown prince in 2012 but deferred to the king on all major policy decisions. (CONTINUED - 1488 WORDS)