Saudi Arabian Oil Minister Ali Naimi said on Monday that he expected oil markets this year to be in balance and price stability to continue at 2010 levels, according to a Platts release.

However, the minister expressed concern at what he said was pressure exerted on prices by speculators and futures market investors.

...the market this year will be in total equilibrium in terms of supply and demand, with an appropriate commercial stock and a spare production capacity that can be used in any unexpected, political or natural emergencies in the producing or consuming nations, Naimi told the Fifth International Competitiveness Forum organized by the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority in Riyadh.

Based on these facts, I expect price stability to continue at last year's rates. The only thing I am concerned about is the upward or downward pressure of speculators, analysts and future market speculators on prices away from natural market fundamentals, Naimi said.