ALGIERS—OPEC President Chakib Khelil ruled out on Sunday an eventual oil price fall in view of strong Chinese and Indian demand, adding geopolitics and a weak dollar were behind the current spike, Algeria's APS news agency reported.
"Steadily rising oil prices are due to phenomena that have nothing to do with supply and demand," Khelil, also Algerian Energy and Mines Minister, was quoted by the state news agency as saying in a briefing for diplomats.
"He explained that the 'surge' in oil prices is 'linked to the August-September 2007 crisis in the United States, where the U.S. central bank took steps to bring down interest rates to activate the U.S. economy but these led to a devaluation of the dollar'," APS said.
"The minister also attributed the rise in oil prices to geopolitical problems, excluding a possible decline in prices in the future, given that strong demand exists from mainly China and India", APS reported.
Oil has gained about 50 percent this year, driven partly by the tensions over Iran's nuclear program, plus expectations that global oil supplies will not cope in the long term with strong demand growth from newly industrializing China and India.
Investment flows into oil have contributed to the price surge, encouraged by commodities' strong returns this year versus a feeble showing from equities.
U.S. crude oil hit an all-time high of $145.85 hit on Thursday.
The price spike has caused fuel protests worldwide and has begun to dampen demand in consuming nations, including the United States, the world's biggest energy consumer.