Saudi official: Kingdom to keep its currency pegged to falling dollar

Saudi Finance Minister Ibrahim al-Assaf says his country has no intention off depegging its currency from the weakening US dollar. According to the official Saudi Press Agency, al-Assaf said the government takes into account the kingdom's interests when making such decisions. Al-Assaf's remarks came at a news conference Saturday following a meeting with US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. Kuwait was the first country in the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council, which includes Saudi Arabia, to abandon its peg with the dollar by allowing the dinar to float against a basket of currencies. The dollar's decline has pushed up the cost of imports into the Gulf, fueling inflation. The decline has also watered down the benefit of record oil prices.