Oil prices surge on trade war truce, prospects for Russian output cuts

Posted December 03, 2018

Qatar has said it will be withdrawing from the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in January 2019.

Naeem Aslam, an analyst at online broker ThinkMarkets, said: "Qatar leaving Opec isn't great news for the oil market and the market participants haven't digested the full impact of this news". "Our potential is gas", he said.

That meeting is expected to set a policy for 2019 and despite Qatar's announcement, oil prices soared on Monday after Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia renewed a pact to cap output on the sidelines of a G20 summit. Qatar wants to ramp up liquefied natural gas production from 77m to 110m tonnes a year.

An existing deal between OPEC and non-member states on oil production quotas expires this year. "I assure you this purely was a decision on what's right for Qatar long-term".

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He denied the move was linked to political tensions between the Gulf State and Saudi Arabia - the de facto leader of OPEC - but insisted it was a choice based on rationality.

Oil prices have fallen more than 25 per cent since climbing to a four-year peak in early October, amid intensifying concerns of oversupply and worries over slowing economic growth.

Although contributing only a fraction of OPEC's overall production, Qatar's decision also throws into question the viability of the cartel.

He said Qatar Petroleum planned to raise its production capability from 4.8 million barrels oil equivalent per day to 6.5 million barrels in the next decade. Qatar has announced that it will withdraw from the OPEC group of oil-producing nations.

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The cartel's largest member, Saudi Arabia, along with three other countries, has cut trade and transport ties with Qatar for the past 18 months, accusing Qatar of supporting terrorism and the Saudis' largest regional rival, Iran. Indonesia rejoined the organization in 2016 after an absence of almost eight years.

It has been helped by the US-China trade war ceasefire, expectations that OPEC will cut output this week and a production reduction by Canada's Alberta province.

"The decision by Qatar to quit OPEC is certainly a surprise, although it is more the timing of the announcement rather than the actual impact on OPEC supply that bears significance", Kelty said in a statement sent to Rigzone.

"We will make a big splash in the oil and gas business soon", he added, according to Reuters.

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