OPEC+ Oil Output Cut Deal 'Welcome Step' Ahead Of G20 Extraordinary Meeting - IEA Chief

MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 10th April, 2020) The executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA) Fatih Birol has praised the OPEC+ countries for establishing an oil output cut deal that was agreed upon by all member states apart from Mexico ahead of Friday's extraordinary meeting of G20 energy ministers.

In a press release, Birol called the OPEC+ deal a "welcome step," and expressed his hope that a binding agreement would be reached during G20 talks scheduled to take place later in the day.

"Following the welcome step announced overnight by some producer countries, I am looking forwards to today's extraordinary meeting of G20 energy ministers. I hope that it will help restore some much-needed stability to oil markets," the IEA chief said.

OPEC+ countries held 10 hours of online talks through the night, and later announced that a declaration of cooperation had been adopted by all member states apart from Mexico. The deal, which commits OPEC+ countries to collectively reduce crude oil output by 10 million barrels per day from May, will only become binding if Mexico signs.

Despite the lack of a legally binding deal, Birol praised member states for gathering and showing a willingness to negotiate.

"I am encouraged by the willingness of all these countries to gather around the (virtual) table today, sending the world a sign of hope and solidarity in these exceptionally difficult times. It is heartening to see countries representing more than 70% of global oil production and 80% of global oil consumption coming together for a constructive dialogue," the IEA chief stated.

Saudi Arabia, which currently holds the G20 presidency, called the extraordinary meeting of energy ministers in the wake of the OPEC+ deal being announced. It is expected that the alliance will continue to convince Mexico to agree to the deal during the talks.

In the early hours of Friday morning, the Azerbaijani Energy Ministry told Sputnik that Mexican officials had rejected to cutting output by 400,000 barrels per day. Mexican Energy Minister Rocio Nahle had earlier said that her country was willing to cut oil production by only 100,000 barrels per day from May to June.