OPEC bullish on oil demand in H2 2016, says current price slide ‘temporary’

OPEC on Monday sounded an optimistic tone about the oil market, saying that higher demand is expected in the third and fourth quarters.

The comments, from Qatar energy minister Mohammed bin Saleh Al-Sada, who serves as OPEC president, are likely to quell any expectations of a production freeze deal in the near future.

The recent decline in oil prices is only temporary, and the result of weaker refinery margins, inventory overhang and the UK’s recent vote to leave the EU, Sada said, according to an OPEC news release.

With major oil consuming countries seeing their economies improve and winter approaching in the Northern Hemisphere, oil demand will rise in the next two quarters, he continued.

This expectation of higher crude oil demand in [the] third and fourth quarters of 2016, coupled with decrease in availability is leading the analysts to conclude that the current bear market is only temporary and oil prices would increase during the later part of 2016, OPEC stated.

OPEC member countries are scheduled to meet informally on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum in Algeria from September 26-28.

The Wall Street Journal on Friday had reported that a production freeze deal could be mooted at that meeting, citing unnamed OPEC delegates, but several analysts are doubtful that such a pact could be agreed.

Can’t help but be sceptical on the resumption of this merry-go-round again after the January-April go around, Wood Mackenzie analyst Ann-Louise Hittle said in a tweet.

Another analyst, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said: As things stand, we wouldn’t expect OPEC to substantially change course unless there is a significant deterioration in global prices.

The last time a production freeze agreement was on the table, several OPEC members met in Doha in April along with a handful of major non-OPEC producers, notably Russia. A deal to keep output at January levels fell apart at the 11th hour with Saudi Arabia insisting that Iran � which did not attend� participate in any production agreement.

Iran has said it would not participate until its production reaches pre-sanctions levels. That could be achieved later this year, though analysts have said Iran could see difficulties in maintaining that level of output, given the lack of investment over the past few years.

OPEC, for its part, said it continues to monitor developments closely, and is in constant deliberations with all member states on ways and means to help restore stability and order to the oil market.

The producer group’s next official meeting is November 30.

Source: Platts

INTERNATIONAL MEDIATION TEAM HAILS ALGERIA’S EFFORTS TO BRING STABILITY TO MALI

BAMAKO, — Members of the international mediation team for Mali have Algeria’s role in the stabilisation of Mali during a meeting here with Algerian Minister of State and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation Ramtane Lamamra.

During Monday’s meeting which was extended to ambassadors of five member countries of the United Nations Security Council, the participants highlighted Algeria’s role in the implementation of Mali’s Peace and Reconciliation Agreement.

At the meeting in the Malian capital, Bamako, held to mark the first anniversary of the implementation of the agreement, the Council of the European Union, which has examined the situation in Africa’s Sahel region, hailed Algeria’s “key role” in the peace process in Mali.

After the meeting, the leader of the United Nations Multi-dimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), Mahamat Salih Annadhif, told journalists that the meeting was an opportunity to assess the implementation of the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement resulting from the Algiers Process.

“We welcome the Algerian Minister’s visit as he brought us together to review the situation,” he added.

He highlighted the presence in Bamako of one of the leaders of the Co-ordination of Azawad (CMA), Cherif Ag Ghali, adding that the presence of Ag Ghali, who had never visited the Malian capital previously, was “an extremely important” event for the implementation of the peace agreement.

Annadhif hailed the signing of the document of understanding for the establishment of interim authorities, which, he said, represented another step forward in the peace process.

Later Monday, Lamamra met his Malian counterpart, Abdoulaye Diop, and called on Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar KeA�ta.

Source: Name News Network