OPEC expects moderate hikes in oil prices following freeze
Secretary General of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries Abdalla El-Badri said at a news conference held in Vienna on Monday that approximately 15 or 16 countries will meet in Doha, Qatar on April 17 to discuss a possible freeze in oil production, adding that it is not certain yet if Iran will join or not.
Saudi Arabia’s Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi confirmed that they are going to participate in freeze talks in Doha. It is also confirmed that Kuwait, Algeria and Libya were invited. A source familiar with the issue also stated that Nigeria will attend the meeting on Monday.
In February, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Qatar and Russia had agreed to freeze oil production at January levels to stabilize oil markets. However, Iran did not find the deal acceptable as it has yet to return to pre-sanction production levels.
Previously, Russia’s Energy Minister Alexander Novak had said that a global deal to freeze oil production could be signed in April without Iran as they have a right to increase oil production following years of sanctions.
OPEC’s secretary general said Iran may join the output freeze later as the country is currently seeking to raise its exports and they are free to decide on their own. El Badri thinks that oil prices have reached the bottom and will record moderate hikes going forward.
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