OPEC Output Unlikely To Change Even If Oil Drops To $40

January 2015, Vol. 242, No. 1

OPEC will stand by its decision not to cut output even if oil prices fall as low as $40 a barrel and will wait at least three months before considering an emergency meeting, said the United Arab Emirates’ energy minister on Dec. 15, according to Bloomberg.

OPEC isn’t planning to change its Nov. 27 decision to keep the group’s collective output target unchanged at 30 MMbpd, Suhail Al-Mazrouei said. Venezuela supports an OPEC meeting given the price slide, though the country hasn’t officially requested one, an official at Venezuela’s foreign ministry said Dec. 12. The group is due to meet again on June 5.

“We are not going to change our minds because the prices went to $60 or to $40,” Mazrouei told Bloomberg at a conference in Dubai. “We’re not targeting a price; the market will stabilize itself.” He said current conditions don’t justify an extraordinary OPEC meeting. “We need to wait for at least a quarter” to consider an urgent session, he said.

OPEC’s 12 members pumped 30.56 MMbpd in November, exceeding their target for a sixth consecutive month, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Kuwait deepened discounts on shipments to Asia, feeding speculation they’re fighting for market share amid a glut fed by surging U.S. shale production.

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