Oil prices up after Putin freeze call
OIL futures rose following remarks from Russian President Vladimir Putin, who said he believed Russia and other producing nations should freeze output to stabilise long-suffering oil prices.
The statements ran counter to views attributed the day before to Russia’s oil minister which appeared to cast doubt on the need for any production freeze.
Mr Putin and Alexander Novak, the energy minister, were also quoted as saying that Russian production would increase this year.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is scheduled to convene late this month in Algeria and oil prices have fluctuated on speculation that the cartel could agree to limit supply.
In an interview with Bloomberg, Mr Putin said he believed Russia and OPEC, which together produce half the world’s oil, should agree to freeze production and that any disagreement with Iran over the issue could be overcome.
Iran has pledged to increase its production to pre-sanctions levels of 4 million barrels per day.
“From the viewpoint of economic sense and logic, then it would be correct to find some sort of compromise,” Mr Putin told Bloomberg. “I am confident that everyone understands that.”
Efforts to reach a similar agreement collapsed in April when top producer Saudi Arabia balked at Iran’s insistence on returning to prior output levels. –
Vladimir Putin wants oil-producing nations to freeze output.