Russia Sees No Need for Oil Freeze Talks Currently, Novak Says

  • Russia ready to discuss freeze if other nations raise issue
  • Novak may meet Saudi oil minister in Algiers next month

Alexander Novak.

Photographer: Christian Marquardt/Getty Images

Russia sees no need for renewing discussion of an oil-output freeze at current crude prices, while leaving open the possibility for the future, Energy Minister Alexander Novak told journalists in Moscow Monday.

“A basis for this has yet to develop, considering prices are still at more or less normal levels,” Novak said. “If prices will fall then that necessity will most likely arise.”

Russia, Saudi Arabia and other major oil exporters met in Doha in April in a bid to stabilize global markets by putting caps on output. The effort collapsed as Saudi Arabia demanded that rival Iran join the pact. At the time, Iran had ruled out any limits as it ramped up production after the lifting of international sanctions.

The Russian energy minister did not exclude the possibility that he could meet with his Saudi counterpart, Khalid Al-Falih, in Algiers next month.

Members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries intend to talk about oil markets and potential cooperation with other producing nations at the International Energy Forum in Algiers in September, but there are no specific plans to renew the freeze, according to two delegates from the group who asked not to be identified.

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