Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest exporter of crude oil, will extend a voluntary production cut of 1 million barrels per day of oil — previously intended to run till the end of December — by another three months, according to the state-run Saudi Press Agency.
The kingdom’s production will stay at around 9 million barrels a day until the end of March 2024, the press agency said, citing “an official source from the Ministry of Energy,” after Saudi officials met with other major oil-producing nations in Vienna Thursday.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, a group known as OPEC+, met to discuss further cuts to oil supply. The group announced after the meeting that it had invited Brazil, another major oil producer, to join OPEC+ from the start of next year.
The office of the Brazilian president told CNN the invitation “is under consideration.”
Brent crude, the global oil benchmark, and West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude, the US benchmark, were down 0.2% at $83 a barrel and 1.6% at $77 a barrel respectively after the Saudi report came out. The contracts traded around $84 and $79 before the meeting.
The ministerial meeting had originally been scheduled for Sunday, but last week OPEC+ postponed it till Thursday, without providing a reason.
Some media reports, citing unnamed OPEC+ sources, said the delay was due to disagreements over the production levels of some members and possible cuts associated with them.
Despite pledges by the group this year to slash output by 3.66 million barrels per day until the end of 2024 — and additional voluntary cuts by Saudi Arabia and Russia — Brent and WTI prices have now fallen 13% and nearly 16% respectively since their peaks in late September.
Prices have been pressured by record crude oil production in the United States and worries about waning global demand for the fuel, particularly in China, the world’s biggest oil importer.
— Hanna Ziady contributed to this article.