June 3, 2017 / 4:22 PM / 2 years ago

Saudi's Falih says more oil output cuts possible, will assess in July

FILE PHOTO: Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih adjusts his glasses during a news conference after a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna, Austria, December 10, 2016. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader/File Photo

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said further oil output cuts could be needed in the future but that OPEC and other leading producers would assess the market situation in July, Russia’s TASS news agency reported on Saturday.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other nations led by Russia agreed last week to extend a deal to limit global oil output for a further nine months, until March 2018.

A committee set up to monitor the cuts is set to meet in Russia in July. Falih, who has been on a visit to Russia this week, said it would then be able to judge if the cuts had been effective in supporting oil prices which have halved in the last three years on the back of a global oversupply glut.

“We have to see the market and I think by the end of June, in July we will see that the action we have taken has a big impact,” TASS quoted him as saying. “If for some reason we need to do more, we will consider doing more including ... bigger cuts.”

“Nothing is off the table but today nothing is on the table either. We made a deal,” he added.

Russia and Saudi Arabia have recently reached a detente in a long-running rivalry that has seen the world’s two biggest oil exporters spearhead the global pact to cut output.

Speaking alongside his Russian counterpart Alexander Novak in Moscow last week, Falih said he saw their new cooperation lasting after the current output agreement expires.

Reporting by Jack Stubbs and Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Helen Popper

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