Saudi Arabia, Kuwait signal likely extension of oil output cut

Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:27am EDT
 
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By Rania El Gamal, Roslan Khasawneh and Richard Mably

ABU DHABI (Reuters) - Leading Gulf oil exporters Saudi Arabia and Kuwait gave a clear signal on Thursday that OPEC plans to extend into the second half of the year a deal with non-member producers to curb supplies of crude.

Consensus is growing among oil producers that a supply restraint pact that started in January should be prolonged after its initial six-month term, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said.

"There is consensus building but it's not done yet," Falih told reporters at a conference in the United Arab Emirates.

Kuwait's oil minister Essam al-Marzouq said he expected the agreement to be extended.

"Russia is on board preliminarily ... Compliance from Russia is very good," Marzouq said.

OPEC Secretary-General Mohammed Barkindo, noting that Marzouq chairs a committee that measures compliance with the cuts, said: "It is significant that the Kuwaiti minister has come out in public and said this."

OPEC is keen that non-member producers play their promised part in supporting the group's efforts to lift prices, which have recovered to $53 a barrel from lows last year below $30.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and non-OPEC meet on May 25 to discuss extending the curbs that total 1.8 million barrels daily, two-thirds of that from OPEC.   Continued...

 
The OPEC flag and the OPEC logo are seen before a news conference in Vienna, Austria, October 24, 2016.   REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger