By Arab News
Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman on Wednesday said the Russian export cut was voluntary and not imposed on them.
Speaking at the 8th OPEC International Seminar in Vienna, Prince Abdulaziz said Russia’s oil cut is meaningful because it affects exports.
“We worked with seven independent entities to review Russia’s numbers, and they stood by the review. It is a voluntary cut; it was not mandatory, which shows their commitment,” the minister said.
On Monday, Saudi Arabia said it would extend its voluntary oil output cut of 1 million barrels per day for another month to include August, adding that the cut could be extended beyond that month.
Following the Saudi move, Russia also announced that it plans to cut its oil exports by 500,000 barrels per day in August.
The cuts amount to 1.5 percent of global supply and bring the total pledged by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, known as OPEC+, to 5.16 million bpd.
The minister said that part of their move to cut oil output was also to mitigate the cynical side of the spectators on what is going on between Saudi Arabia and Russia on that specific matter.
“We are trying to be fair, and we are trying to meet the market’s needs. We are avoiding the cynical part of the questions being asked,” he said.
“We, as administrators, are always collaborating to answer the questions circulating. That is the only way to build a strong organization that addresses market conditions,” the minister added
Prince Abdulaziz also stated that Russia-Saudi oil cooperation is still strong as part of the OPEC+ alliance, which will do “whatever is necessary” to support the market.
He further explained that the meeting of OPEC+ on June 4 addressed the market conditions thoroughly and took the necessary actions to meet the requirements.
The meeting concluded with an extension in oil production cuts and a focus on a lower target for 2024.
The energy minister added: “The lessons learned from the pandemic is to have more transparency between OPEC+ members and beyond, in addition to having a strong foundation of collaboration and communication to benefit the market.”
“We need to focus on the main issue that will allow us to sail toward the future. That is where we need to collaborate,” he added.