Saudi Oil Minister Discusses OPEC With Russian, Algerian Officials

Under Saudi guidance, OPEC decided last November not to cut output, allowing oil prices to plunge.



Saudi Arabian Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi discussed OPEC and the oil market with officials from Russia and Algeria on Wednesday, Saudi state news agency SPA reported.

Naimi met in Riyadh with Viktor Zubkov, chairman of state-controlled Russian energy giant Gazprom, and they talked about cooperation between OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers as well as opportunities for Saudi-Russian energy projects.

In a separate meeting with Algerian Justice Minister Tayeb Louh, Naimi discussed the importance of cooperation between OPEC and non-OPEC nations for oil market stability, and “the relative improvement in the market in terms of an increase in demand and the stability of prices in the current period,” SPA said.

The news agency did not give further details of the discussions about the oil market.

Under Saudi guidance, OPEC decided last November not to cut output, allowing oil prices to plunge in an effort to protect its market share against higher-cost producers.

Before the November meeting, Algerian officials indicated they wanted to explore OPEC production cuts to prop up prices. Russia would prefer to see much higher prices because cheap oil has put its state finances under heavy pressure.