Opec+ decision to cut output 'technical' and 'right' measure, UAE energy minister says

Several members of the alliance have stepped up their defence of the group’s output reduction

Minister of Energy and Infrastructure Suhail Al Mazrouei said Opec+ members were unanimous in reaching their decision. Photo: Adipec
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The UAE's Minister of Energy and Infrastructure has said Opec+'s decision to slash production was “technical” and meant to “stabilise” crude oil prices.

“We truly trust and believe in the technical credibility of the Opec and Opec+,” Suhail Al Mazrouei told reporters during a conference before the start of Adipec on Tuesday.

Earlier this month, the 23-member alliance of oil-producing countries slashed its crude output by 2 million barrels per day amid signs of a global economic slowdown.

The move, which drew criticism from the White House, led to a more than 10 per cent surge in oil prices.

On Tuesday, oil edged lower as the prospect of additional supplied from strategic reserves eased market concerns of a tight market heading into the winter season.

Brent, the benchmark for two thirds of the world’s oil, was trading 3.03 per cent lower at $88.84 a barrel at 6.49pm UAE time on Tuesday. West Texas Intermediate, the gauge that tracks US crude, was down 3.91 per cent at $82.12 a barrel.

“We are against the rumours that this is political … we always meet and discuss the facts and how we can all contribute to taking the right measures to balance the supply and demand,” Mr Al Mazrouei said.

“The decision is always taken unanimously and the same approach was taken in the last meeting,” he said.

Other Opec+ members have also stepped up their defence of the group’s output cut.

Algerian Energy Minister Mohamed Arkab called the decision a “purely technical” response to the international economic situation.

Bahrain's Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed solidarity with Saudi Arabia and “its refusal to politicise the Opec+ decision” on production cuts.

On Sunday, Oman’s Energy Ministry said that Opec+ decisions were based on purely economic considerations and the realities of supply and demand in the market.

Mr Al Mazrouei also said that countries needed to increase their oil and gas spending as a global energy shortage looms.

“Many countries have lost production capacity and they are in decline now,” he said.

Adnoc, which is responsible for most of the UAE’s crude oil production, aims to boost its capacity to 5 million bpd by 2030 amid growing global demand for oil and gas with a lower carbon intensity.

Updated: October 18, 2022, 3:04 PM