OPEC close to agreement with independent suppliers

OPEC said today it is looking to form an alliance with rival independent oil-producing countries for global oil output curbs aimed at lifting world crude prices. Cartel ministers lobbied independent producers to push for the full 500,000 barrel-a-day cut that OPEC has wanted as a condition for triggering its own supply curbs, OPEC sources told the media. The contacts came a day after leading non-aligned

OPEC said today it is looking to form an alliance with rival independent oil-producing countries for global oil output curbs aimed at lifting world crude prices. Cartel ministers lobbied independent producers to push for the full 500,000 barrel-a-day cut that OPEC has wanted as a condition for triggering its own supply curbs, OPEC sources told the media.

The contacts came a day after leading non-aligned producer Russia announced it would contribute a 150,000 barrel per day reduction in crude exports starting January 1.

A full two million barrels daily reduction among OPEC and non-OPEC nations would slice by about 6% supplies from 15 countries that account for some 60% of world production. OPEC said last month that if independent producers didn’t start restricting supply, oil prices could crash to $10 a barrel.

"The announcement from Russia this week was a welcome development and we remain optimistic that other producers will follow suit," OPEC secretary-general Ali Rodriguez said.

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