The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allied oil exporters led by Russia are reportedly set to hold an urgent meeting on Sunday to clinch a last-minute agreement to save the oil market from further tumbling.
The virtual meeting is scheduled for 4pm GMT, the Azerbaijan Energy Ministry confirmed to Russian media. The same time frame was reported earlier by Bloomberg.
The participants are meant to finalize their talks that have been ongoing since Thursday, when the oil alliance came up with a plan to cut global oil production by 10 million barrels per day to ramp up crude prices. However, the agreement became conditional as Mexico refused cut its output as much as other members wanted.
Global oil majors are rushing to reach an agreement on unprecedented output cuts before the oil market opens. The last time OPEC+ talks failed in Vienna due to a disagreement between Russia and Saudi Arabia, the market suffered a chaotic opening, with crude prices falling around 30 percent.
As the previous deal expired at the end of March, Riyadh rushed to ramp up its oil production to record highs – over 12 million barrels per day – and simultaneously offered a discount to its buyers. The move further sank the already flooded oil market, as demand had been crippled by the coronavirus crisis.
Earlier in the day, Moscow, which supports the proposed cuts but insists that the countries outside the alliance should join the efforts to stabilize the energy market, warned that the global economy will face “unmanageable chaos” if no deal is reached.
It is still unclear whether OPEC will agree on the terms Mexico proposed on Friday. The country’s president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, offered a cut of only 100,000 barrels per day, rather than the 400,000 barrels the group demanded. The US, where some oil companies are struggling to survive the low crude prices due to their high production costs, came up with a solution to cut an additional 250,000 barrels per day on Mexico’s behalf. That would bring the total contribution of the two states to 350,000 barrels per day, but still 50,000 barrels short of the target.
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