ALGIERS (Sputnik) – The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-cartel oil producers present at the meeting of the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) said they were ready to boost oil production to compensate for any possible shortfall, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Falih said on Sunday.
“The Kingdom [of Saudi Arabia] alone has a remaining 1.5 million barrels per day of spare capacity that is available. Other ministers present today have also shown us they have spare capacities that they will be ready to deploy if there is demand and it is required by any shortfalls for a number of factors, either geopolitical, technical disruptions, weather-related and of course due to any conflicts,” Falih said at the press conference after the JMMC meeting in Algiers.
The minister also noted that OPEC and non-cartel oil producers recommitted themselves during the meeting to adopting “evergreen” cooperation framework beyond 2018, stating that the countries would examine oil production and hear guidance at the ministerial meeting in December.
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He announced that draft declaration of cooperation with other countries participating in the Vienna agreement on oil production cuts was ready and was also set to go through finalization and approval in December.
“We expect the ministers [to] sign and approve [the declaration] in December and subsequently there will be a continuous scheduled coordination at technical levels, ministerial meetings and hopefully there will be a summit to launch this charter in action,” Falih added.
Tehran and OPEC+
In the meantime, Iran’s OPEC Governor Hossein Kazempour Ardebili highly estimated the cooperation within OPEC+ format.
“We are happy with cooperation with OPEC, non-OPEC. Of course, we are big producers, we shall remain there [in the agreement],” he told reporters after observing the JMMC meeting in Algiers, asked about Iran’s readiness to remain in the Vienna deal.
Asked what would happen when the OPEC-non-OPEC agreement ends in 2018, the Iranian official said that he expected another similar deal.
The Iranian OPEC governor stressed that Tehran would continue to export oil despite the US attempts to hamper the country’s trade with other countries by reimposing sanctions.
The US has been reintroducing sanctions on Iran after Washington pulled out from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal in May.
Comment of Russia on Iran
Addressing the situation around Iran, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak noted that OPEC+ Committee took the current oil production of the Islamic republic into account.
“Today, at JMMC, Iran said that they still retained oil production… Those forecasts, which the technical committee presented today, take into account the current situation,” Novak told journalists.
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According to the minister, the participants of the oil output cut deal need to maintain the balance of the oil market, which is not an easy task.
“We have, as my colleagues say, great uncertainties in a number of areas, which, unfortunately, we are witnessing today in global economic markets, and, of course, we will have to work very, very, very hard together in order to achieve the goals and ensure the implementation of our common arrangements in order to achieve equilibrium in the market,” Novak said.
In 2016, OPEC and several non-OPEC oil producers, including Russia, agreed to cut output by a total of 1.8 million barrels per day in an effort to stabilize oil prices. The agreement, which came into effect in 2017, has been extended twice since then and will remain in force until the end of 2018.
The US has been reintroducing sanctions on Iran after Washington pulled out from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), commonly known as the Iranian nuclear deal, in May.
The OPEC presented on Sunday its short- and mid-term forecasts, as well as for the period up to 2040, in its report World Oil Outlook 2040.