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    OPEC-Agreed Lowering of Oil Extraction Doubtful - Russian Energy Minister

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    According to the Russian energy minister, an agreement between countries to lower the extraction of oil is doubtful.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – An agreement between OPEC members or any other countries to lower the extraction of oil is doubtful, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said Friday.

    “In our opinion, it’s unlikely that all of the countries inside OPEC will agree on lowering extractions, let alone countries not belonging to OPEC,” Novak said during an interview on Russia’s RBC television.

    “These consultations have been ongoing over the last year and a half as soon as the prices started to fall in mid-2014. Even the countries within OPEC have not come to a united opinion on the policy of lowering extractions. In regard to 2015, we see that countries within OPEC like Saudi Arabia and Iraq have collectively increased their volumes of extraction by 1.5 million barrels per day,” Novak added.

    World oil prices continued to decline Friday as Brent crude fell by over 3 percent against yesterday's close, while West Texas Intermediate (WTI) fell by over 5 percent, according to trading data.

    The crude prices plunged from $115 per barrel to $48.5 per barrel between June 2014 and January 2015, hitting the lowest levels since 2004 in January 2016. The recent decline comes as markets brace for Iranian oil supplies to kick off, reportedly as early as next week.

    The decline in oil prices has been attributed to global overcapacity, OPEC's decision to maintain output as well as economic turmoil plaguing the world's leading energy consumers, notably China.


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