OPEC ‘set to roll over supply deal, discuss deeper oil curbs’

Security concerns have held back a $53 billion deal with Exxon to boost Iraq’s oil output at its southern fields. The US energy giant evacuated staff from one oilfield for security reasons. (Reuters)
Updated 28 June 2019

OPEC ‘set to roll over supply deal, discuss deeper oil curbs’

  • Iraq authorities and Exxon working on final draft of agreement, minister says
  • •A deal between OPEC and its allies to curb oil output by 1.2 million barrels expires at the end of June

LONDON: OPEC is expected to roll over a deal on cutting supplies at a meeting next week and discuss deepening the curbs that have been in place since Jan. 1, Iraq’s oil ministersaid on Thursday.

A deal between the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia to curb output by 1.2 million barrels runs out at the end of June. Meetings on July 1-2 in Vienna will discuss the next steps.

“The rollover at least would be at the same level because it has not been very effective. It has been effective to a certain level to minimise the glut in the market, but there are now ideas or calls for agreeing (on) even more,” Oil Minister Thamer Ghadhban said.

He said the issue would be discussed in Vienna, but declined to specify what alternative level of cuts were being suggested.

Sources told Reuters this month that Algeria had floated an idea of deepening the cut by some 600,000 barrels per day.

Ghadhban also told reporters in London that Exxon had completed an evacuation of its staff from an oilfield in southern Iraq for security reasons.

Contractual wrangling and security concerns have held back a $53 billion deal with the US energy giant to boost Iraq’s oil output at its southern fields, Iraqi government officials have said.

Ghadhban said at the CWC Iraq Petroleum Conference in London that the two sides were drawing up a heads of agreement, adding one snag related to pricing and inflation adjustments remained.

“We are now working on final draft of our agreement. The point has to do with pricing, inflation and deflation, related to cash flow how to look at the price and returns. It’s purely a technical point, not political,” the minister said.


Britain expects ‘very significant’ week for Brexit talks as clock ticks down

Updated 29 November 2020

Britain expects ‘very significant’ week for Brexit talks as clock ticks down

  • Despite missing several self-imposed deadlines, the negotiations have failed to bridge differences on competition policy and the distribution of fishing rights
  • Britain’s transitional EU exit agreement expires on Dec. 31, and Britain says it will not seek any extension

LONDON: Britain and the European Union are heading into a “very significant” week, British foreign minister Dominic Raab said on Sunday, as talks over a trade deal enter their final days with serious differences yet to be resolved.
EU negotiator Michel Barnier told reporters in London that “works continue, even on Sunday” on his way to a negotiating session, as both sides look for a deal to prevent disruption to almost $1 trillion of trade at the end of December.
“This is a very significant week, the last real major week, subject to any further postponement... we’re down to really two basic issues,” Raab told the BBC.
Despite missing several self-imposed deadlines, the negotiations have failed to bridge differences on competition policy and the distribution of fishing rights.
But Britain’s transitional EU exit agreement — during which the bloc’s rules continue to apply — expires on Dec. 31, and Britain says it will not seek any extension. A deal would have to be ratified by both sides, leaving little time for new delay.
“The bottom line is... in the ordinary course of things we need to get a deal done over the next week or maybe another couple of days beyond that,” Raab told Times Radio in a separate interview.
Earlier, he had signalled some progress on the ‘level playing field’ provisions which look to ensure fair competition between Britain and the EU, and said fishing remained the most difficult issue to solve.
Despite accounting for 0.1% of the British economy, fishing rights have become a totemic issue for both sides. Britain has so far rejected EU proposals and remains adamant that as an independent nation it must have full control of its waters.
“The EU have just got to recognize the point of principle here,” Raab told Times Radio.