Saudi Arabia will seek moderate output cut for 2019

Saudi Oil Minister Khalid al-Falih's comments sent ripples through the market

Khalid Al Falih, Suhail Mohamed Al Mazrouei, OPEC, Vienna

At the OPEC Conference in Vienna today, where OPEC members met to discuss oil production for 2019, Saudi oil minister Khalid al-Falih told reporters that the organisation is "looking for a sufficient cut to balance the market, equally distributed between countries."

He noted that a cut of approximately 1mn barrels per day (bpd) would be enough, adding that the organisation doesn't want to "shock the market."

His comments spurred worries in the market, as cuts were generally estimated to fall in the range of 1.2mn to 1.4mn barrel per day. The price of Brent crude fell to $60 per barrel (as of writing).

Saudi Arabia is taking a moderate stance following Russia's reluctance to cut production and US President Donald Trump urging OPEC to keep prices low.

Read: Trump tweets OPEC that "world does not want to see, or need, higher oil prices!"

In his opening remarks at the conference, UAE Energy Minister Suhail Mohamed Al Mazrouei said that 2019 presented "a new set of challenges," and emphasised the importance of collaboration with allies.

"It is essential that we look to move ahead with a more permanent relationship with our non-OPEC producers, in order to continuously adapt to ongoing market dynamics, and to help meet the challenges, as well as opportunities, that we will face in the months and years ahead," he said.

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Oil & Gas Middle East - December 2018

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