Maduro Says OPEC Set to Agree on Reducing Oil Output

CARACAS, VENEZUELA � OPEC countries are ready to reach a "forceful" agreement on cutting oil output, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said Wednesday, following a meeting with OPEC Secretary-General Mohammed Barkindo in Caracas.

"There is sufficient will among OPEC countries to take the step we need to take in the month of November, [to reach] a forceful agreement to reduce production and construct new mechanisms to stabilize the market," Maduro said in a televised broadcast from the presidential palace.

He said the agreement should "guarantee a realistic and balanced price for those countries that have [oil reserves]."

Barkindo praised Maduro for leading the effort to stabilize markets, describing the situation as the most severe oil market crisis in 50 years. He is expected to visit more OPEC members in the next few days.

Russia on Wednesday said it was ready to support the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries' decision on an oil output freeze.

OPEC agreed in Algeria on September 28 to limit supply, with special conditions given to Libya, Nigeria and Iran, whose output has been hit by wars and sanctions.

The details are meant to be finalised when OPEC ministers meet in Vienna on November 30.

Since oil prices collapsed in 2014, Venezuela has been among the most vocal in pushing both OPEC and non-OPEC countries to slash crude output.

Its calls were initially ignored by major energy players such as Saudi Arabia, but oil producers have shown increased interest in coordinating output amid continued weakness in crude markets

Source: Voice of America