Putin says oil cuts with OPEC could last to end of 2018

Violet Powell
October 6, 2017

The oil output cut deal between OPEC and non-OPEC nations has helped stabilise markets and opens up prospects for further cooperation, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday.

Saudi Arabia wants to establish an worldwide center to fight terrorism under the aegis of the United Nations, Salman said.

Saudi Arabia's ministry of information called the visit by 81-year-old Salman "historic" as it would be the first official visit to Russian Federation by a Saudi monarch. Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation backed different sides in the war in Syria. Both countries have been hit hard by a plunge in oil prices three years ago.

One expert says the last thing Saudi Arabia needs is higher oil prices. Brent crude was up more than 2 percent at $57.12 a barrel by 1615 GMT.

The two leaders discussed oil during their "historic" meeting.

Salman said he was looking to expand relations with "friendly nation" Russian Federation "in the interests of peace, security and development of the world economy".

While Russia and Saudi Arabia are partners on the oil market, they are at loggerheads on Syria, where Moscow supports President Bashar al-Assad and Riyadh backs the opposition.

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Bloomberg News reported last month that Riyadh was making contingency plans for a possible delay by a few months into 2019.

Food security is a major concern for Saudi Arabia, which stopped local production of livestock feed and wheat due to water scarcity.

They also diverge on Yemen, where a Saudi-led coalition has been bombing Huthi rebels since 2015, drawing criticism from Moscow.

"At the moment, RDIF and Saudi Arabia's Investment Fund have implemented projects worth over $1 billion". Another memorandum of understanding was signed under which Russian petrochemicals firm Sibur would explore cooperation with Saudi Arabia.

The current agreement runs until March 2018.

"Bullish comments from the Russian and Saudi Energy ministers are helping arrest the recent decline in oil prices", said Stephen Brennock, analyst at London brokerage PVM Oil Associates.

"Work is ongoing to list Saudi Aramco in 2018", Aramco's Chief Executive Amin Nasser said at an energy forum in Moscow.

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