OPEC+ agrees to stay with existing oil output targets
Oil-producing alliance OPEC+ agreed on Sunday to keep its same production targets, dealing another setback for the U.S. and western allies seeking to curb high gas prices.
OPEC, led by Saudi Arabia, slashed oil production starting in November by 2 million barrels, a cut that will remain in effect after Sunday’s meeting, the group confirmed in a statement.
The decision comes after the Group of Seven (G7) nations as well as Australia agreed on Friday to cap what they would pay for Russian oil at $60 per barrel, which is set to take effect on Monday along with an EU embargo on Russian oil shipped by sea.
The move angered Moscow and a spokesperson said it would not accept the price cap, which is intended to cut into Russia’s war chest to hinder the nation’s ability to fight in Ukraine.
OPEC+ rebuffed U.S. efforts to block the cuts that were decided in October.
President Biden over the summer had traveled to Saudi Arabia to meet with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman amid soaring gas prices in the U.S.
At the October meeting, OPEC members cited concerns about potential recessions in Europe and the U.S. for lowering oil production output, which before the cuts was already down.
Now, COVID-19 infections in China and general unrest is creating more uncertainty.
The price for a barrel of oil closed on Friday at $85.42, which is down from $98 a month ago.
In the U.S., gas prices have fallen to $3.41, according to transportation and automobile organization AAA.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.