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Oil producers optimistic about output cut agreement in Vienna

Updated: 2016-11-21 10:20

    Oil producers said Friday after a meeting in Doha that they are optimistic about reaching a deal at next Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) meeting in Vienna.

    Officials from eleven OPEC and non-OPEC member countries gathered today in an informal consultative meeting to discuss talks on output cut under the general terms of a proposal tabled in Algeria in September.

    Qatar's Energy Minister Mohammed Al-Sada told reporters after the meeting that it was held amid an atmosphere of optimism to reach an agreement.

    Al-Sada said that Friday's meeting came within the framework of meetings held periodically by countries inside and outside the OPEC to negotiate the stabilization of oil production.

    Talking about Iran and Iraq freezing oil production, he noted that the meeting touched on all issues related to fixing oil production.

    Iraq and Iran both want exemptions from any OPEC cuts in output. Energy ministers of the two countries bypassed today's talks.

    Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said, after meeting OPEC counterparts here today, he thinks OPEC was moving closer to a deal.

    "We are moving in the direction of agreements...I am confident that by November 30, the OPEC and non-OPEC countries will agree," Novak said.

    Speaking to reporters, he said the meeting was "very positive" and the prospects of reaching a deal are acquiring a "realistic character," adding that he had a "constructive" meeting with his Saudi counterpart Khalid al-Falih.

    Novak confirmed that if an agreement is reached, Russia is ready to join and cap output.

    Libyan Energy Minister Musa Koni affirmed that all indicators confirm the trend towards freezing or reducing production.

    Koni said that there will be a meeting next week for the Committee of Experts to consider the issue of production quotas.

    In this regard, Algerian Energy Minister Nouredine Boutarfa stressed that there will be a fair distribution between producers.

    Mechanisms have been put in place to reach the level of production that was agreed upon in Algeria at 32.5 million barrels, Boutarfa added.

    OPEC agreed in Algeria in Sept. to cut oil production to 32.5 million barrels a day from current level of 33.24 million barrels a day to boost the market.

    However, disagreements persisted among producers on details of a plan to cut the output.

    The cartel will agree concrete levels of output by each country at its next formal meeting on Nov. 30 in Vienna.


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