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Saudi crown prince says unrealistic energy policies will lead to inflation

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Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, addressing a U.S.-Arab summit, said on Saturday that unified efforts were required to support the global economy and that unrealistic policies regarding energy sources would only lead to inflation.

“Adopting unrealistic policies to reduce emissions by excluding main sources of energy will lead in coming years to unprecedented inflation and an increase in energy prices and rising unemployment and a worsening of serious social and security problems,” he said.

The de facto ruler of the world’s top oil exporter said COVID-19 and the geopolitical situation necessitated more joint efforts to support the global economy and that environmental challenges required a “realistic and responsible” approach to gradually transition to sustainable energy sources.

The summit gathered U.S. President Joe Biden with leaders from six Gulf Arab states and Egypt, Jordan and Iraq. Biden held bilateral talks with Saudi leaders on Friday in Jeddah.

U.S. officials have said Biden would discuss energy security with leaders of Gulf oil producers and hopes to see more action by OPEC+ to boost output, but there was unlikely to be any bilateral announcements from the talks.

The United States is eager to see Saudi Arabia and its OPEC partners pump more oil to help bring down the high cost of gasoline and ease the highest U.S. inflation in four decades.