Saudi king names son energy minister

Saudi king names son energy minister

King Salman of Saudi Arabia on Sunday named one of his sons as the country's energy minister while the country seeks to quell the negative effects of low oil prices.

Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, the half-brother of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, will replace Khalid al-Falih and will be the first Al Saud family prince to lead the ministry, according to The Associated Press.

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The news outlet reported that Abdulaziz has held senior roles at the ministry for more than 30 years and is considered a safe choice to lead it.

The country's crude oil has been trading at less than $60 per barrel, but analysts have said it needs to be between $80 and $85 a barrel to keep up with the government's spending, according to the AP. 

The wire service reported that al-Falih, who led the apparatus since 2016, has recently seen his role diminish. This could reportedly be due to a lack of favor with the crown prince over issues including reported slowness to implement a plan to sell shares of the state owned oil company Aramco. 

Prince Mohammed has pushed to diversify the country's economy and lessen its dependence on oil.