‘The problem we have with Iran is bad behavior,’ says Saudi Arabia’s MBS

The Saudi Crown Prince began the interview by defending his reform program entitled “Vision 2030”, providing numerous figures and technical explanations. “Saudi Arabia existed before the discovery of oil,” he said, breaking with the traditional narrative that the Saudi state owes its existence and survival only to the discovery of black gold in its basement. .

“Our production has increased slightly over time, but the population has increased very significantly, from 3 million to 20 million Saudis (…) Oil is therefore less and less able to finance the way of life to which we became accustomed in the 60s, 70s and 80s .

He went on to plead in favor of the diversification of the kingdom’s economy, taking Algeria as an example: “Algeria is an oil country, but is it a rich country?”

He used many English words – “passion”, “V-shaped”, “growth”, “we generate money”, “demand”, “supply”, “pillar”, “genuine”, “skills” », Etc.) to explain that the world oil supply will decline more rapidly than demand, US and Russian production expected to drop drastically over the next 10 years.

This situation is favorable to Saudi Arabia – which has the largest recorded reserves in the world – but, according to the Saudi crown prince, the kingdom should make an effort to come out of its dependence on oil.

“The Ijtihad is always open”

On the issue of religious reforms and individual freedoms, MBS made some startling statements.

Repeating that he was acting in accordance with “the Saudi Constitution which is the Koran”, he hired, without appearing to do so, in a critique of the foundations of Saudi religiousness, expressing his opinion on the hadiths – the words and actions of the Prophet Muhammad, whose teachings are the basis of Islamic law.

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