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Algeria to seek consensus on oil price


Algeria is in talks with oil producers within and outside Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), to reach an agreement that would stabilize the oil market and raise prices, the Algerian Minister of Energy, Salah Khebri said on Sunday.

“Contacts are underway to stabilize the market, marked by oversupply facing weak demand and the absence of an economic recovery,” said Mr. Khebri, who was quoted by the Algerian APS news agency.

These discussions aim to “build consensus among producing countries to cut production,” added the minister , whose country is a member of OPEC.

“The fact that OPEC has not taken a decision to reduce production in November 2014 means that the price has continued to fall,” he said.

According to the Algerian minister, the talks “are not restricted to OPEC members only but will also include other major oil producing countries that are not members of the cartel, such as Russia.”

“OPEC is losing ground, its share increased from 44% in 1990 to 31% currently, hence the importance that major non-OPEC producing countries adhere to this approach of reducing production,” Khebri said.

The North African oil minister however warned that Algeria will not participate in the meeting if there is no prior agreement on the decline in production.

Oil and gas production account for 60 percent of Algeria’s state budget and the reduced energy earnings has forced the government to slash spending and freeze some major projects.

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