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Saudi Arabia, Russia Pledge to Stabilize Oil Market | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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A gas flame is seen in the desert near the Khurais oilfield, about 160 km (99 miles) from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia June 23, 2008. REUTERS/Ali Jarekji/File Photo

Crude oil futures pared gains on Monday after the world’s two biggest oil producers Saudi Arabia and Russia said Monday they had agreed to “act together” to try to stabilize oil prices, including limiting output.

Brent crude futures for November delivery were up $1.12 per barrel at $47.95 a barrel at 1125 GMT, after hitting a session high of $49.40.

U.S. crude for October delivery was up $1.11 a barrel at $45.55 a barrel, after reaching a high of $46.53 a barrel earlier in the session.

Saudi Arabia and Russia said on the sidelines of the G20 summit in China that they signed an agreement to set up a task force to review oil market fundamentals and to recommend measures and actions that will secure market stability.

Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said the two countries were moving to a strategic energy partnership and that a high level of trust would allow them to address global challenges.

Saudi energy minister Khalid al-Falih told Al-Arabiya television channel he was optimistic about cooperation with other producers ahead of a meeting this month in Algiers. Falih said there was “currently no need to freeze production” after meeting Novak.

“A freeze is one of the preferred options but it is not needed for the moment,” he said.

Below is a text of the statement:

Joint Statement of the Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources of Saudi Arabia Khalid A. Al-Falih and Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation Alexander Novak:

The Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources of Saudi Arabia Khalid A. Al-Falih and the Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation Alexander V. Novak met in Hangzhou, China on the sidelines of the G20 Summit.

In their meeting, the Ministers recognized the importance of maintaining their ongoing dialogue about current developments in oil and gas markets and indicated their mutual desire to further expand their bilateral relations in energy. This stems from the fact that the two countries currently shoulder the responsibility of producing more than 2I -percent of global oil demand which is required to fuel global economic growth, improve standards of living and help achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

1. The Ministers recognizer the current challenges in the supply side of the global oil market, including major contraction of capital investments in oil extraction on a global scale, particularly in exploration, as well as mass deferrals of investment projects, which made the market, as a whole, more volatile and therefore unsustainable to both producers and consumers in the long term. There is an imperative to mitigate excessive volatility harmful to global economic stability and growth. In this regard, the Ministers noted that constructive dialogue and close cooperation among major oil producing countries is crucial to oil market stability to ensure sustainable levels of investment for the long term. Therefore, the Ministers agreed to act jointly or with other producers. In addition, the Ministers agreed to continue consultations on market conditions by establishing a joint monitoring task force to continuously review the oil market fundamentals and recommend measures and joint actions aimed at securing oil market stability and predictability.

2. The Ministers agreed to promote cooperation between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Russian Federation in the oil and gas industry, including deployment of new technologies, exchange of information and expertise to raise the level of technology applications in production, refining, storage, transport and distribution, as well as equipment production, support services such as engineering, manufacturing and research activities, along with collaboration in power generation and renewable energy.

3. The Ministers committed to explore the possibility of creating a joint database on advanced energy technologies, along with feasibility assessments of their deployment, utilization, and financing through sovereign funds of both countries.

4. The Ministers decided that the first meeting of the Saudi -Russia Working Group on oil and gas cooperation established according to Article 4 of the Cooperation Agreement between the Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Government of the Russian Federation on oil and gas cooperation dated the 2nd of September 2003 and the Execution Program of the agreement dated the 18th of June 2015, shall be held during October 2016, to enhance the cooperation, and implementation of what has been agreed upon. Furthermore, the Ministers will meet again on the sidelines of the upcoming meetings of IEF in Algeria and OPEC’s November meeting in Vienna.

The Joint Statement was signed in Hangzhou on the 5th of September 2016.

The Russian Federation The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

A. Novak Khalid A. Al-Falih Minister of Energy, Industry Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources