UAE sticks with planned OPEC target even as others cut more

After three fellow members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said they are cutting production more than required by last year’s deal, the United Arab Emirates is sticking to the original plan. The UAE doesn’t intend to reduce output more than was agreed with OPEC in November, Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei said in an interview with Bloomberg television in Abu Dhabi. The country pledged to curtail production by 139,000 barrels a day to just over 3 million a day, its contribution to an OPEC agreement announced on November 30. The UAE’s fellow Gulf-based OPEC nations Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, as well as Algeria, said on Thursday they were making bigger production curbs this month than they agreed to in November. Russia, one of 11 non-members that subsequently joined the agreement, also said it had cut more in early January than originally planned. Global oil markets will re-balance in the summer as the coordinated output curbs by OPEC and its partners gradually deplete “historically high” inventory levels, Mazrouei said. Recovering supplies from Nigeria and Libya, the OPEC nations exempted from having to make cuts, are unlikely to return quickly enough to threaten the re-balancing process, he added. “I am not worried that that capacity is going to be rounded up very quickly,” Mazrouei said. (Yousef Gamal El-Din, Mahmoud Habboush and Nayla Razzouk/Bloomberg) (With assistance from Grant Smith, Anthony DiPaola and Desley Humphrey)

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