Multiple OPEC+ producers defended the group’s decision to reduce production in November in a wave of statements on Sunday and Monday, in what looked like a coordinated response to U.S. criticism of the cut.
The United States said last week there would be some consequences for Saudi Arabia for its decision together with Russia to steer OPEC+ into a large oil production cut after OPEC+ endorsed earlier this month a decision to reduce the headline production target by 2 million barrels per day (bpd) as of November.
A day after U.S. President Joe Biden threatened “there will be consequences” for OPEC+’s decision, Saudi Arabia came out with a statement that expressed “its total rejection” of Biden’s and other statements from Washington with regard to the decision.
“This decision was taken unanimously by all member states of the OPEC+ group,” a statement from Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry said last week.
Other OPEC+ producers, including the United Arab Emirates, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, and Algeria also issued statements on Sunday and Monday, in which officials defended the cut as necessary for the market and reiterated the decision taken by the group was unanimous.
On Sunday, Iraq’s state oil marketing company, SOMO, said in a statement carried by Reuters, “There is complete consensus among OPEC+ countries that the best approach in dealing with the oil market conditions during the current period of uncertainty and lack of clarity is a pre-emptive approach that supports market stability and provides the future the guidance it needs.”
The UAE’s Energy Minister Suhail al-Mazrouei wrote on Twitter on Sunday, “I would like to clarify that the latest OPEC+ decision, which was unanimously approved was a pure technical decision, with NO political intentions whatsoever.”
Algeria’s Energy Minister Mohamed Arkab told Reuters in a statement the decision was “a purely technical response based on purely economic considerations.”
Oman, Bahrain, and Kuwait also defended the OPEC+ production cut.
By Michael Kern for Oilprice.com
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