The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies, a group known as OPEC+, on Sunday agreed to adjust their overall production level to 40.46 million barrels per day (bpd) next year.
The oil-producer alliance announced the decision in a statement released after the 35th OPEC+ ministerial meeting held in Vienna earlier in the day.
In the statement, OPEC+ reiterated its efforts to “achieve and sustain a stable oil market, and to provide long-term guidance for the market.”
Last October, OPEC+ slashed its production targets for 2023 (between November 2022 to December 2023) to 41.86 million bpd. In April this year, the alliance announced a further voluntary output reduction of 1.66 million bpd.
OPEC+’s latest decision came amid sliding oil prices in recent weeks. The alliance’s surprise production cuts in early April had pushed up oil prices to above 85 U.S. dollars a barrel, but the prices swiftly retreated and have been hovering just above 70 U.S. dollars a barrel in recent days under pressure from lingering concerns over the economic outlook and demand.
Following OPEC+’s announcement on Sunday, Saudi Arabia’s energy ministry announced a further cut of oil production by 1 million bpd, which will start in July for a month that can be extended, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
The Saudi energy ministry said the voluntary output reduction is in line with the agreement reached in the OPEC+ ministerial meeting.
The United States and other Western countries have for months accused OPEC+ of pushing up oil prices and fueling inflation with its production cuts, whereas OPEC+ has insisted that the cuts have been made to stabilize the oil market where demand has weakened amid a worsening global economic outlook.
The OPEC+ countries on Sunday also decided to hold the group’s ministerial meeting every six months. The next meeting for the OPEC+ oil and energy ministers will convene on Nov. 26. ■