Saudi, Iran brace for tense OPEC meet over oil supply

21 Juin, 2018, 08:20 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • Buhari-oil

At the Friday meeting, Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation would push for increased supplies but may face opposition from Iran and its allies, according to media reports.

"We will do whatever is needed to maintain market stability and ensure that there are no oil supply shortages", said Abdulaziz bin Salman, a Saudi prince and minister of state for energy affairs.

"While we are not in favour of prices as low as $30 per barrel, we also do not support the prevailing high price which dent our fiscal balance and undermine our development process".

Brent crude was up 50 cents at 75.58 dollars a barrel by 1335 GMT. Washington has been pressuring Riyadh to boost its output to bring down prices.

Trump has in recent months repeatedly blamed OPEC for a spike in oil prices, but Zanganeh said it was USA sanctions on Iran and Venezuela that had fuelled fears of a supply crunch and put pressure on prices.

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The brewing tensions between the world's two largest economies comes ahead of Friday's highly anticipated meeting of oil ministers from around the globe at the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries in Vienna.

OPEC will discuss possible changes to the supply-cut deal in the Austrian capital later this week.

During the meeting, the group is expected to raise crude output after more than a year of cutting it to stabilize once-falling prices.

The decision sparked concerns in the US that China would turn to Iran as a potential oil supplier, buoying the Iranian market in the midst of the White House's reinstatement of hardline sanctions on Tehran. Unlike Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation, which have ample spare capacity to increase production, many OPEC countries would be unable to significantly raise output.

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