NuStar Chairman says oil price upside unlimited

SAN ANTONIO, April 24 Thu Apr 24, 2008 5:23pm EDT

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SAN ANTONIO, April 24 (Reuters) - The chairman of NuStar Energy LP (NS.N), which operates U.S. pipelines and terminals, on Thursday said there is no ceiling for the rising price of crude oil.

"You take into consideration the weak dollar," NuStar Chairman Bill Greehey, said after the company's annual shareholder meeting.

"Then you take into consideration that demand continues to go up, primarily in China and India, we have a finite amount of reserves, so at some point, it will continue to get tighter and tighter in supply, and demand is going to continue to go up. I don't know where the top is," he said.

When asked whether crude oil prices of $130 to $140 per barrel were within reach, Greehey said, "absolutely."

Crude oil futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange set an intraday record of $119.90 on Tuesday.

The company's chief executive officer also said the company's purchase of two asphalt refineries from Citgo Petroleum Corp, the U.S. subsidiary of Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA left it well positioned.

"Looking at that segment, it's a segment that other refiners don't want to deal with, it's a byproduct to them, for us it's a focus. That focus will bring us profitability," CEO Curt Anastasio said.

NuStar also predicted a 'long term relationship' with Venezuela, to supply low grade petroleum for its asphalt operations.

NuStar was spun off last year from leading U.S. refiner Valero Energy Corp (VLO.N). (Reporting by Jim Forsyth in San Antonio; Editing by Marguerita Choy)

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