Russia backs gradual, managed exit from oil cuts with Opec

MOSCOW: Opec and Russia will exit from oil production cuts very smoothly, possibly extending the curbs in some form so as not to create any new surplus in the market, the Russian energy minister said. Alexander Novak also said in comments cleared for publication on Friday that he saw no direct connection between the oil cuts and Saudi Arabia’s plan to list Aramco, the world’s top oil producer. “Everyone in the market is interested in achieving balance,” Novak said in response to a question on whether Saudi Arabia could abruptly exit the cuts as soon as it lists Aramco sometime in 2018.
The share sale promises to be the world’s biggest. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other large oil producers led by Russia agreed last month to extend until the end of next year their deal to cut a combined 1.8 million barrels per day of output. The move is aimed at clearing a global stocks overhang and propping up oil prices. Russia and Saudi Arabia have significantly improved bilateral ties this year, resulting in a visit to Moscow by Saudi King Salman accompanied by a large political and business delegation. — Reuters