The situation on the global oil market has improved since last month’s OPEC+ meeting, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said at the opening of this month’s OPEC+ ministerial meeting on Thursday, while Saudi Arabia called again for a cautious approach to easing the production cuts.
There are still many uncertainties on the global oil market, especially in Europe, Russia’s top oil diplomat said.
Yet, there is currently a deficit of 2 million barrels per day (bpd) on the market, Novak said at the start of the OPEC+ meeting, which was open to the media.
According to the Russian minister, it is now critical neither to overheat nor to undersupply the oil market.
Ahead of the meeting, Russia was said to be favoring a rollover of the alliance’s oil production cuts, but it is seeking a slight increase for itself to meet higher seasonal demand.
Saudi Arabia was reportedly ready to extend current OPEC+ production cuts over May and June and also keep cutting 1 million bpd in oil output unilaterally, according to an unnamed source who spoke to Reuters.
Saudi Arabia, however, expressed a more cautious position about oil demand recovery at the beginning of today’s OPEC+ meeting.
“Until the evidence of the recovery is undeniable, we should maintain this cautious stance,” Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, said in his opening speech, which had analysts speculate that OPEC’s top producer and de facto leader would be pushing for a rollover of the cuts.
“Last month, we called for a cautious and restrained approach, and - unfortunately - we have been proved right by subsequent developments,” Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said.
“In today’s uncertain environment, charting a rigid path to recovery is unwise. The reality remains that the global picture is far from even, and the recovery is far from complete,” the minister said.
At the time of writing just past 3 p.m. Vienna time, the OPEC+ meeting behind closed doors had just started.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:
- The Real Ramifications Of China's LNG Deal With Qatar
- The Future Of U.S. LNG Hangs In The Balance
- Recent SEC Decision Could Spark Investment In Big Oil