CNN) — Saudi Arabia can make up for any loss of crude oil production if sanctions are placed on Iran, the country’s oil minister told CNN in an exclusive interview set to air Monday.
“I believe we can easily get up to 11.4, 11.8 (million barrels a day) almost immediately, in a few days, because all we need is to turn valves,” Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi told CNN’s John Defterios. “Now to get to the next 700 or so, we probably need about 90 days.”
When asked about whether Saudi Arabia could make up for Iran’s exports of 2.2 million barrels a day, al-Naimi said the country has a spare capacity “to respond to emergencies worldwide, to respond to our customer demand, and that is really the focus. Our focus is not on who drops out from production, but who wants more.”
He also discussed his outlook for oil prices in 2012 amid tensions in the Gulf region.
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