JEDDAH: Ahmed Zaki Yamani, Saudi Arabia’s longest-serving oil minister and the man behind the oil embargo after the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, has died in London at the age of 90.
Yamani became Minister of Petroleum in 1962, replacing Abdullah Tariki, founding member of OPEC. He promoted Arab interests and effectively negotiated oil production and prices, becoming a dominant figure in setting production quotas in world markets.
Ahmed Zaki Yamani in Tokyo in 1974. Yamani, a key player in the first oil shock of 1973, died at the age of 90 (AFP / File)
Born June 30, 1930, the son of an Islamic scholar and judge in Mecca, Yamani studied in Cairo, then graduated from New York University School of Law and received a master’s degree from Harvard Law School.
He led the nationalization of the Kingdom’s oil industry, which became fully state-owned in 1980, and played an important role in the development of OPEC. He was the public face of the 1973-1974 oil crisis, when the price of crude quadrupled to $ 12 a barrel.
In 1975, Yamani and 11 other oil ministers were held hostage at the OPEC conference in Vienna by Venezuelan terrorist Ilyich Ramirez Sanchez, known as Carlos the…
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