Saudi Arabia works on convincing Russian Federation to join oil cuts

International Brent crude oil futures were down 56 cents or 0.9 percent at $61.52 per barrel

OPEC and its allies were discussing the idea of reducing output next year by reverting to production quotas agreed in 2016, an OPEC source told TASS.

The remarks came just a day prior to OPEC's meeting in Vienna, piling pressure on the Saudi-led cartel, Russian Federation and other non-member nations over potential global oil policy-making.

OPEC meets in Vienna on the verge of an oil production cut that would defy U.S. President Donald Trump's plea to keep the taps open.

"We hope to conclude something by the end of the day tomorrow".

"Yes, we will have a cut", Oman's oil minister Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhi said on Wednesday evening.

"If everybody is not willing to join and contribute equally, we will wait until they are".

The current 1.8 million barrels per day production cut will expire in December. The price of both benchmark United States crude and the standard for internationally traded oil fell 22 percent in November.

"We think OPEC will spend some time to choose the words being used".

"The oil cut will be between 1.0 and 1.3 million bpd".

"I think the likelihood is that they will cut crude production rate, maybe not as dramatically as some people would like, to try and meet a balance between what the US would like and their own personal interests".

Led by Saudi Arabia, OPEC's crude oil production PRODN-TOTAL has risen by 4.1 per cent since mid-2018, to 33.31 million barrels per day (bpd).

Iranian exports have plummeted after the United States imposed fresh sanctions on Tehran in November.

Oil prices have crashed by nearly a third since October to around $60 per barrel as Saudi Arabia, Russia and the UAE have raised output since June after Trump called for higher production to compensate for lower Iranian exports.

The United States is not part of any output-limiting initiative due to its strict anti-trust legislation and fragmented oil industry. Most producers made clear they agree on the need for a cut in oil production.

"We're looking for a sufficient cut to balance the market, equally distributed between countries", Al-Falih told reporters ahead of an OPEC meeting in the Austrian capital.

Riyadh under pressure from Trump not to reduce output, Moscow resists deep cuts. Iraqi Oil Minister Thamer Ghadhban said Iraq as OPEC's second-largest producer would support and join a cut.

That has put OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia in a delicate position - Riyadh is keen not to incur Trump's wrath as relations between the two countries become increasingly complicated in the wake of the murder of opposition journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Trump has backed Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman despite calls from many USA politicians to impose stiff sanctions on Riyadh.



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