Related Articles
Free access
Forward article link
Share PDF with colleagues

Minister of the Year

Khalid A. Al-Falih, Saudi Arabia

Having long been one of the oil industry's most influential figures, 2017 has been a year in which Saudi Arabia's Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources has shown exceptional leadership.

Also holding the position of chairman of Saudi Aramco, Al-Falih has steered the world's largest oil exporter to the heart of negotiations to help rebalance the oil market.

Al-Falih has spearheaded the historic deal between Opec, and some of the world's largest oil producers outside of the group, to restrict their crude output to help speed up market rebalancing.

His influence has been felt acutely. Saudi Arabia's decision in the summer of 2017 to cut exports, as well as its production, has been credited with one of the key factors which have helped to draw down OECD oil inventories from historic highs. And the kingdom's compliance to the cuts deal has far exceeded its obligations.

Meanwhile, the kingdom is undergoing unprecedented changes, both in its leadership and its energy policy.

Steered by Saudi Arabia's new Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, the kingdom's longer-term journey promises economic reform and a gradual weaning off its dependence on oil. For now, Al-Falih's focus on oil-market fundamentalsand continuing to draw down stocks-are continuing to have a vitally important impact on the market's road to rebalancing.

Also in this section
Venezuela catches the crypto craze
16 March 2018
Is "The Petro" a leap forward or just a cash grab?
A slimmer, fitter Adnoc
12 March 2018
With an eye on new paths being followed by NOCs in the neighbourhood, Abu Dhabi is injecting new energy into the firm
BP sees increasing energy sector competition
1 March 2018
The UK company's latest energy outlook flags up more diversity, but doesn’t predict an imminent collapse in oil demand