Oil prices plunged on Tuesday evening following a report that said Saudi could restore 70 per cent of the oil production lost after this weekend’s attack Image Credit: File photo

London: Oil plunged more than 6 per cent in London after Reuters reported Saudi Arabia is close to restoring 70 per cent of the oil production lost after this weekend’s attack.

Brent crude dropped as low as $64.48 per barrel on the report, which cited an unidentified Saudi source saying it would return to full production in the next two to three weeks. Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdul Aziz Bin Salman is scheduled to hold a press briefing on Tuesday in Jeddah.

Estimates of when, and how much, of the 5.7 million barrels a day of shut output would be back online has fluctuated since the attack. Significant volumes could come back within days, people familiar with the matter said over the weekend, adding that it could still take weeks to restore full capacity.

The worst ever sudden disruption to global oil supplies continues to reverberate as geopolitical risk premiums soar on concern over instability in the Middle East and a potential retaliation against Iran, which the US has blamed for the strikes.

The attacks, which damaged one of the Saudis’ flagship fields and a key processing complex, triggered one of the wildest bouts of trading seen in oil markets, with Brent futures rising 19 per cent in a matter of seconds at the open on Monday and ending the day up 15 per cent, their biggest single-day advance.