In a statement on the eve of the Seventh International Energy Forum [LINK TO ITS WEB PAGE] which opens in Riyadh on Friday, November 17, 2000, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Ali Al-Naimi emphasized the Kingdom's commitment to cooperate with both oil producers and oil consumers in order to stabilize the global market and enhance the world economy. The upcoming conference, he said, had as its aim opening channels of contact and understanding between producers and consumers, a relationship that must be reciprocal.
Minister Al-Naimi went on to point out that the main cause of the rise in oil prices is the taxation that is imposed on consumers, accounting for as much as 70 to 80 percent of the retail price. Cooperation is needed, he said, in a spirit of "frankness and transparency, without accusations and counter-accusations".
Some 377 delegates from over 40 countries and nine international organizations are expected to participate in the three-day forum, which is being co-sponsored by Japan and the Netherlands.