President Donald Trump is one factor among many impacting oil markets right now, according to Bob Dudley, the chief executive of oil giant BP.
"He's (Trump is) keeping people guessing on many, many fronts and it also impacts the oil markets," Dudley told CNBC's "Squawk Box Europe," but he added that the U.S. president was not the only factor affecting prices.
"It's more than that (the Trump administration). There's uncertainty in the supply from Venezuela, there's still disruptions in Libya, for example, there's a lot of uncertainty out there," Dudley said.
Dudley's comments at the ADIPEC energy conference in Abu Dhabi come at a pivotal moment for oil markets with Saudi Arabia performing an about-turn this weekend by announcing a 500,000 barrel per day production cut in December. The surprise move comes after it had ramped up production this summer along with other major producers Russia and the U.S. due to concerns over a decline in supply once sanctions on Iran came into effect in November.
The measure, taken by the defacto leader of OPEC, is seen as a way to halt a 20 percent slump in prices seen since early October on the back of the surge in production.
Saudi Arabia's oil minister said Sunday that markets were well supplied and that price rises over the summer due to a feared Iranian shortfall had been an overreaction.
Meanwhile, Dudley said OPEC's ministerial committee was not getting anything "wrong" in changing course, it was just recognizing that circumstances surrounding Iranian sanctions had changed, with the U.S. granting exemptions to eight countries that purchase Iranian oil. This had meant the impact of sanctions was not as bad as it could have been and so upping production was not as necessary.
"They (Saudi Arabia) were worried about (the) under supplying of the market and triple-digit oil prices. Now they're saying, actually, it (upping production) might be a little bit too much right now because of the exemptions," Dudley added.
Dudley said Trump's decision to grant waivers to the sanctions was not unsurprising, saying "I don't think he wanted to see $100 (a barrel) oil."