OPEC+ members line up to approve production cut after US coercion claim

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  • The United States claimed that more than one OPEC country had been forced to cut
  • Iraq, Kuwait, other members of OPEC+, maintain the decision
  • Saudi defense minister says decision was purely economic

CAIRO, Oct 16 (Reuters) – OPEC+ member states lined up on Sunday to approve a sharp production cut agreed this month after the White House, escalating a war of words with Riyadh, claimed that Saudi Arabia had coerced other countries into supporting the movement.

Washington noted on Thursday that the cut would boost Russia’s foreign income and suggested it was engineered for political reasons by Riyadh, which flatly denied on Sunday that it supported Moscow in its war on Ukraine.

The kingdom’s defense minister, Prince Khalid bin Salman, also said the October 5 decision to cut production by 2 million barrels a day – which was taken despite tight oil markets – was unanimous and based on economic factors.

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His comment was echoed by Iraq, OPEC’s second largest exporter, and several other producing states.

“There is complete consensus among OPEC+ countries that the best approach to dealing with oil market conditions during the current period of uncertainty and lack of clarity is a precautionary approach that supports market stability. and provides the necessary guidance for the future,” Iraq said. state oil distributor SOMO said in a statement.

Kuwait Petroleum Corporation chief executive Nawaf Saud al-Sabah also welcomed the move by OPEC+ – which includes other major producers, including Russia – and said the country was keen to maintain a balanced oil market. , the official KUNA news agency reported.

Oman and Bahrain also said in separate statements that OPEC had unanimously agreed to the cut.

Algeria’s energy minister called the Oct. 5 decision “historic” and he and OPEC secretary general Haitham Al Ghais, who is visiting Algeria, expressed their full confidence in it, Algeria reported. Algerian television Ennahar.

Ghais later told a press conference that the organization was aiming for a balance between supply and demand rather than a specific prize.

Oil inventories in major economies are at lower levels than when OPEC cut production in the past.

But some analysts said recent volatility in crude markets could be corrected with a drop that would help lure investors into an underperforming market.

U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Thursday that “more than one” OPEC member felt coerced by Saudi Arabia into voting, adding the cut would increase would also affect Russia’s revenues and lessen the effectiveness of the sanctions imposed for its invasion of Ukraine.

Khalid bin Salman said on Sunday he was “amazed” by claims that his country “stands with Russia in its war against Ukraine”.

“It is telling that these false accusations do not come from the Ukrainian government,” the king’s youngest son wrote on Twitter.

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Reporting by Moataz Mohamed, Yasmin Hussien and Maha El Dahan; additional reporting by Nayer Abdallah and Ahmed Tolba; Editing by Louise Heavens, Alexandra Hudson

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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