Oil prices have taken a bad battering in recent weeks but got some reprieve on Friday thanks to hints that OPEC and its allies could extend their supply cut pact when they next meet.
"The last couple of years have been good. The last few weeks have not been so good, and going to the June meeting we are seeing a consensus emerging that we need to continue the supply management regime that we established."
Those comments came in St Petersburg where Russia is playing host to an Economic Forum amid concerns that global trade tensions could depress the global economy.
And after they hit a five-month low, weigh further on crude prices.
"We cannot even talk about prices for tomorrow. The fundamental factors that usually determine the oil prices, the balance of supply and demand, are taking a back seat to news, sanctions, trade wars. It is unpredictable."
Growth in demand, Novak said, had taken a sharp hit in 2019.
But WTI crude prices perked up by around 50 cents a barrel on al-Falih's remarks and around 60 cents for Brent to put it just over 62 dollars a barrel.
Anything below 60 dollars could stop oil firms investing in the industry, he warned.
But - with prices still up around 16 per cent since the OPEC supply cut started in January, Al-Falih said despite shaky sentiment, demand was - quote - "rather healthy"