Saudi energy chief: Oil glut is past

HOUSTON – The man in charge of Saudi Arabia’s oil empire says the energy glut that kindled a crippling oil rout and thrashed Houston’s biggest business for two years has finally vanished.

Click through the gallery above to see how the oil glut has affected the economy.

“We are out of it,” Saudi energy minister Khalid Al-Falih told Fuel Fix late Tuesday in his first one-on-one newspaper interview since his rise to the most powerful job in the energy industry last month. “The oversupply has disappeared. We just have to carry the overhang of inventory for a while until the system works it out.”

He was in Houston this week to visit Saudi Aramco operations here and later joined in an evening meal to break the Ramadan fast at Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts.

And though the U.S. alone has a stockpile of 530 million barrels, Al-Falih expects the world to absorb the glut by sometime next year.

At Al-Falih tells Collin Eaton how the oil glut will end and explains the new chapter he sees for the cyclical energy business.