Synthetic fuel was produced by the Germans during WW2 because their oil wells were regularly bombed. And the recipe for it is to use coal and make it react with water to force the hydrogen to combine with the carbon and create hydrocarbon. It is a very inefficient process. It costs more that petroleum.
As for the price manipulation, it is indeed true, but not the way you think.
Producing one barrel of oil in Saudi Arabia costs less than $10. And $15 in Russia. Yet the barrel of crude is selling for $54 at this point in time, and the exporting countries and companies lower the price at strategic moments to discourage the investment in the production of *bio fuel* based on algae, that could get competitive with conventional oil if properly researched, and would be carbon neutral to boot.
The rest of the time, they are happy to see the stuff for 5 times what it costs to extract.