No talks on oil output increase: UAE

The Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq deny a media report that Opec+ group is considering an 'increase of up to 500,000 barrels a day' ahead of the next month's meeting


Muzaffar Rizvi

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Published: Tue 22 Nov 2022, 3:32 PM

Last updated: Tue 22 Nov 2022, 6:58 PM

Major oil producers denied a media report that they are engaged in discussions with Opec+ members to increase crude production for their next meeting on December 4.

The UAE Energy and Infrastructure Minister Suhail bin Mohammed Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei denied a report published by the Wall Street Journal on Monday that the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) and its allies including Russia, known as Opec+ group, is considering an “increase of up to 500,000 barrels a day” ahead of the next month meeting. The report cited unidentified Opec delegates.

Al Mazrouei denied that the UAE is engaging in any discussion with other Opec+ members to change their latest agreement and said that the agreed deal is valid until the end of 2023.

“We remain committed to Opec+ aim to balance the oil market and will support any decision to achieve that goal,” Al Mazrouei said in a Twitter post.

Saudi, Kuwait, Iraq also denied

Saudi Arabia also denied the Wall Street Journal report and backed the UAE’s stance saying a cut approved in October would stay in place until the end of 2023.

The official Saudi Press Agency said on Monday night that Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman “categorically denies” the report.

“It is well known, and no secret, that Opec+ does not discuss any decisions ahead of its meetings,” SPA quoted Prince Abdulaziz as saying.

“The current cut of two million barrels per day by Opec+ continues until the end of 2023 and if there is a need to take further measures by reducing production to balance supply and demand, we always remain ready to intervene,” he said.

Kuwait minister denies there have been talks on Opec+ oil output increase

Kuwait Oil Minister Bader Al Mulla on Tuesday also denied reports that there have been discussions to increase oil production at the next Opec+ meeting, state new agency Kuna reported.

“Kuwait is keen to maintain stability and balance in oil markets,” the agency quoted Mulla as saying.

The head of Iraq’s state oil marketer Somo Alaa Alyasri told Reuters on Tuesday there have been no discussions about Opec+ deciding on a production increase at its next meeting.

“There are no disucssions around this topic,” Alyasri said.

Algeria’s minister of energy and mines Mohamed Arkab said there are 'no ongoing discussions' on a revision of the October 5 Opec+ oil production decision.

"Speculation on 'improbable revisions of Opec+ production levels' is likely to disrupt oil markets. Opec+ decisions are taken in complete transparency at meetings,” Mohamed Arkab said in a statement.

Oil prices rebound

Meanwhile, oil prices staged a rebound on Tuesday after the UAE, Saudi Arabia and other major oil producers said Opec+ is stick with output cuts and could take further steps to balance the market, outweighing global recession worries and concern about China’s rising Covid-19 case numbers.

Brent crude rose 97 cents, or 1.1 per cent, to $88.42 by 1435GMT while US West Texas Intermediate crude was up $1.19, or 1.5 per cent, at $81.23 a barrel.

“Crude oil prices are trying to recover their losses,” Naeem Aslam, analyst at Avatrade said.

“That Saudi Arabia has denied there was any discussion about an increase in oil supply with Opec and its allies has supported the market today,” he said.

World oil prices plunged more than five per cent on Monday, reaching the lowest levels since January, on forecasts of a hit to Chinese demand. Concerns over oil demand in the face of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hikes and China’s strict Covid lockdown policies limited the upside.

“The critical risk to a price cap policy is the potential for Russian retaliation, which would turn this into an additional bullish shock for the oil market,” Stephen Innes, managing partner at SPI Asset Management, said in a report.

— With inputs from Reuters

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