OPEC head stands by output freeze
DOHA, February 25, 2016 – Mohammed bin Saleh Al Sada, Qatari Minister of Energy and Industry and current president of OPEC, on Thursday underscored the need for a cap on production as a means to stabilise oil prices, potentially pushing them upwards of USD 50 per barrel.
Speaking to CNNMoney, Al Sada proposed to freeze output at January 2016 levels. “We think [a production freeze] will gather more and more approval because it is [in] the interest of all parties,” he said.
Earlier in February, OPEC members Kuwait, Qatar, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, backed by non-member country Russia, said they could keep oil production level. The idea was dismissed as “a joke” by Iran and called “ridiculous” by Iraq. Omani Minister of Oil and Gas Mohammed bin Hamad bin Saif Al Rumhy said on Wednesday that his country stands with Iran in the latter’s objection to the idea of capping production.
Al Sada, for his part, warned that smaller independents would not be able to sustain the losses they are incurring at the moment. He added that the current level of oil prices is insufficient to “sustain conventional oil [production], let alone unconventional oil.”