Bloomberg has quoted an unnamed source as saying that Saudi Aramco decided to delay the announcement of its official oil selling prices for May until later this week.
The source claimed that a new date for the announcement, scheduled for today, has yet to be set and that it may take place on Tuesday or Thursday, in a sign that Aramco will wait for the results of the upcoming OPEC+ meeting.
Bloomberg also reported that the postponement is “the second month in a row that Aramco delays its key pricing announcement beyond its traditional deadline of releasing the numbers by the 5th of the month”.
The move, which is expected to affect about 14 million barrels a day of regional oil exports, comes after OPEC and Russia reportedly postponed their Monday meeting to discuss supply cuts for 9 April.
The decision followed US President Donald Trump expressing hope that during the gathering, Russia and Saudi Arabia will manage to agree on a deal to end their price spat that has been in place since last month.
Referring to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Trump said during his meeting with US oil executives on Friday that he thinks “[Russian] President Putin and the crown prince want something to happen badly”.
The statement came after US oil prices increased by around 25 percent on Thursday following a tweet by Trump that he expects Saudi Arabia and Russia to agree to cut output by between 10 million and 15 million barrels per day.
Just spoke to my friend MBS (Crown Prince) of Saudi Arabia, who spoke with President Putin of Russia, & I expect & hope that they will be cutting back approximately 10 Million Barrels, and maybe substantially more which, if it happens, will be GREAT for the oil & gas industry!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 2, 2020
.....Could be as high as 15 Million Barrels. Good (GREAT) news for everyone!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 2, 2020
Oil prices drastically plummeted early last month, after OPEC+ members failed to reach an agreement on output cuts amid the coronavirus crisis.
Russia called for leaving output cuts at previously agreed upon levels, while Saudi Arabia and its allies suggested that additional cuts be made, in a move that was followed by the Saudi Energy Ministry’s decision to increase the Kingdom’s daily production capacity to 13 million barrels of oil from the current 12 million barrel level.
Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin said at the time that the demise of the OPEC+ agreement did not take place at Moscow’s initiative, given that “[…] we offered to extend the agreement on current conditions until the end of the second quarter as a minimum or the [end of the] year”.