OPEC, Russia Move Closer to Cutting Oil Output

OPEC, Russia Move Closer to Cutting Oil Output

But they're contending with vociferous opposition from the USA president, who's taken to using his Twitter account to berate the group's policies and sees low oil prices as key to sustaining America's economic growth. Most producers made clear they agree on the need for a cut in oil production.

Russia, Saudi Arabia and the United States have been vying for the position of top crude producer in recent years.

The group secured the participation of Russian Federation for six months of output curbs starting in January, Oman's Oil Minister Mohammed Al Rumhy told reporters in Vienna as he left the meeting on Wednesday.

As a quick prelude to that, oil prices have fallen by nearly a third since October to below $60 per barrel all because of the Saudis raising their production to compensate for a drop in Iranian oil exports due to fresh USA sanctions, which in turn, were not as harsh as first thought.

Two OPEC delegates said Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak was flying back to Moscow on Wednesday to get a final agreement from President Vladimir Putin.

Oil prices have fallen by nearly a third since October to around $62 per barrel after Saudi Arabia raised production to make up for the drop in Iranian exports.

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Donald Trump has often complained about OPEC this year as higher crude oil prices have raised fuel cost. Trump wrote in a tweet ahead of the group's meeting this week to discuss possible cuts. "The World does not want to see, or need, higher oil prices!"

Possibly complicating any OPEC decision is the crisis around the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October.

"Trump is anxious about the Fed and inflation".

"We think OPEC will try to come up with a fuzzy production cut. They'd like to see lower gasoline prices at the pumps, because that's important for votes in the United States." . Official U.S. government oil production and inventory data are also due on Thursday. That will likely lead to the withdrawal of USA support for the Saudi-backed forces in the war in Yemen.

Trump, who has made the US economy one of his top issues, has frequently complained about OPEC this year, as higher crude oil prices have in turn raised fuel prices for consumers and businesses.

"Nobody wants to mention a number, because it means you're committing yourself to how much you're going to cut", said Al Rumhy.

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