Saudi Arabia doesn’t need USA permission to cut oil output - energy minister

AUSTRIA Opec President and Energy Minister of the UAE Suhail al Mazrouei opens the 175th Opec Conference in Vienna on Wednesday.—AFP

AUSTRIA Opec President and Energy Minister of the UAE Suhail al Mazrouei opens the 175th Opec Conference in Vienna on Wednesday.—AFP

"We're looking for a sufficient cut to balance the market, equally distributed between countries", Falih said. The global benchmark, Brent, was down $2.20 at $59.36 a barrel on a day when stock markets also fell sharply around the world. Trump wrote in a tweet on Wednesday. "The World does not want to see, or need, higher oil prices!" said Trump, who has in the past repeatedly accused the cartel of keeping prices artificially high.

Trump's comment came as members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and other oil-producing nations prepared to meet Thursday and Friday, December 6-7, in Vienna to discuss lowering their output.

"A massive liquidation in long positions by money managers has dampened market confidence on oil prices considerably", said Benjamin Lu of Singaporean brokerage Phillip Futures.

Over the past two months, however, prices have plunged again.

"A million (barrels cut) would be ideal", the Saudi minister said. "I think that's the fair and equitable solution", he added.

The US sold overseas last week a net 211,000 barrels a day of crude and refined products such as gasoline and diesel, compared to net imports of more than 2 million barrels a day on average so far in 2018, and an annual peak of more than 12 million barrels a day in 2005, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

However, OPEC's third-biggest producer Iran wants to be exempted from any such measures.

Riyadh wants Moscow to contribute at least 250,000-300,000 bpd to the cut but Russian Federation insists the quantity should be only half of that, OPEC and non-OPEC sources said.

Novak, speaking from Saint Petersburg on Thursday, said that his country was watching closely how the situation was developing. "The World does not want to see, or need, higher oil prices!"

Since overtaking Saudi Arabia, many in Washington feel the United States no longer needs to shackle itself to Riyadh.

One issue that might complicate relations between the U.S. and OPEC is the murder of Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi by people linked to the government in Riyadh. U.S. Senators say, after a briefing with intelligence services, that they are convinced that Saudi's de-facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was involved in Khashoggi's death.

Riyadh wants Moscow to contribute at least 250,000-300,000 bpd to the cut but Russian Federation insists the amount should be only half of that, Opec and non-Opec sources said.

Iran, OPEC's third-biggest producer, complained that it was the first time a United States president was trying to tell OPEC what to do.

"They should know that OPEC is not part of their secretary of energy", he said.

Although the market believes that wellhead economics offer attractive returns in many areas of the USA shale patch even at $50 WTI Crude, the financial markets are not yet convinced that "a typical shale oil E&P is able to grow in a self-sourced manner", Rystad Energy said in an analysis last week.

Why is Qatar leaving OPEC?

The Saudi energy minister stressed that he doesn't support any exemptions from further slashing of oil output.

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