Vienna: With global crude oil prices climbing back over $50 a barrel levels, the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on Thursday decided against an expected output cut and continue producing at existing volumes.
The 12-nation cartel, which accounts for 40 per cent of global crude output, said in a statement following its meeting in Vienna that its members were committed to a “stable and balanced oil market. The market is moving through the balancing process”.
“We will be very gentle in our approach and make sure we don’t shock the market in anyway,” Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih told reporters after the meeting.
Saying that in future OPEC may need to cap output, Qatari Energy Minister Mohammed bin Saleh al-Sada said: “At this time the atmosphere is positive and the market is comfortable for us.”
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“We’ve seen that the worst is over. We all tolerated the dropping of oil prices,” al-Sada said. OPEC at its last meeting in December in Oatar with other producers like Russia failed to agree on an output ceiling.
OPEC member Iran has been ramping up production to its pre-sanctions levels despite the recent supply glut.
Following the meeting, Brent crude for August delivery was trading higher by 0.6 per cent at $50.04 a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.
The Indian basket of crude oils, composed of 73 percent sour grade Dubai and Oman crudes and the rest by sweet grade UK Brent, closed on the previous trading day on Wednesday at $46.38 a barrel of 159 litres, after having fallen below $25 earlier in the year.
State-run Indian Oil Corp hiked the petrol price by Rs 2.58 a litre and of diesel by Rs.2.26 per litre both at Delhi with corresponding increases in other states from Wednesday.