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OPEC Chief Invites All 97 Oil Producers To Join OPEC+ Coalition

Tsvetana Paraskova

Increased cooperation is the best recipe for overcoming intensified uncertainties and heightened volatility on the global oil market, OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo said this week, inviting all 97 oil producing countries in the world to join the OPEC/non-OPEC alliance that has been managing oil supply in the market over the past nearly three years.

Speaking at an event in Sochi, Russia, Barkindo said that the OPEC+ alliance of OPEC and 10 non-OPEC producers led by Russia “has served the interests of producers, consumers and the global economy” over the past three years. The so-called ‘Charter of Cooperation’ of the 24 oil-producing countries could help the global oil market get through external shocks in the future, such as geopolitics, trade tensions, monetary policies, and natural disasters, according to OPEC’s head.

“Therefore, further and more intensified cooperation is the best prescription to treat volatility. For this reason, participation in the ‘Charter’ is voluntary and open to all producing countries. I would like to extend the hand of friendship to all 97 oil producing countries and invite them to join the ‘Charter of Cooperation’ as we seek to build a better world,” Barkindo said in his speech.

This is not the first time that OPEC’s chief has invited oil producers that are not part of the production cut deal to join a dialogue on ways to stabilize the oil market.

U.S. President Donald Trump is welcome to join a dialogue on balancing the global oil market, Barkindo said in February.

Related: $300 Oil: What If The Attacks In Saudi Arabia Had Destroyed Production?

Asked to comment on President Trump’s criticism of OPEC’s production cut policy, Barkindo told Reuters back then that the United States, in its capacity of the world’s top oil producer, has a strategic stake in global supply and demand.

The world’s top oil producer, however, isn’t keen on market-managing policies, and President Trump has often called out OPEC on Twitter for manipulating oil prices or for keeping them “artificially high.”

Other major oil producers, including Canada, Brazil, and Norway, for example, are not part and haven’t expressed desire to be part of the ‘Charter of Cooperation’ either. It’s growing oil supply from the U.S., Brazil, and Norway that has been offsetting OPEC’s efforts to rebalance the market and prop up oil prices.  

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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