Columnist

Wael Mahdi

Wael Mahdi is an energy reporter specializing on OPEC and a co-author of “OPEC in a Shale Oil World: Where to Next?”

Twitter: @waelmahdi

Latest published



A new way of thinking: Aramco moves from equity to debt

Next year was supposed to be an interesting year for the equity market in Saudi Arabia and abroad because of the plans to sell a stake of Saudi Aramco to the public in what was expected to be the biggest initial public offering ever.

August 11, 2018

China is still key to future of oil market

The first half of 2018 turned out to be a very successful period for OPEC and its allies. The alliance of OPEC and other non-OPEC producers, better known as OPEC+, was about to celebrate its triumph in June and declare that the job of rebalancing the oil market was done.

August 05, 2018

OPEC lacks cohesion and vision, but it is good that we have it

Has OPEC learned anything from its past?

July 31, 2018

Why protecting Bab Al-Mandeb is a global responsibility

First, it was pirates; now it is Houthis.
Almost 10 years ago, the oil market was shocked by the news that a Saudi oil tanker, Sirius Star, was hijacked by Somali pirates.

July 26, 2018

A market without OPEC isn’t good for the US

It’s no surprise to see US politicians in an open confrontation with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

July 22, 2018

Ten years after oil peak, what has changed?

July 11, 2008 was an unforgettable day for the oil industry. The price of West Texas Intermediate — a grade of crude oil used as a benchmark in oil pricing — hit an all-time high of $147 per barrel in New York.

July 15, 2018

Why 2 million Saudi barrels will not solve world’s oil problems

President Donald Trump’s move to pressure OPEC to increase production is not the optimal solution to cool down higher oil prices.

That is because there is no single country or group that can carry the burden of balancing the oil market alone these days.

July 01, 2018

Why Russia holds the wild card in OPEC’s high-stakes meeting

Many in the oil market believe that the next OPEC gathering on Friday will be another difficult meeting for the bloc. 

Such a reading doesn’t go far enough, however; if member states fail to agree on production increases, it could be a dangerous meeting. 

June 20, 2018

Why the market, not politicians, should set oil prices

OPEC had been planning to keep oil supply cuts in place until the end of 2018, but political pressure to increase output is mounting, leaving ministers with one question to ask at their meeting on June 22: By how much should OPEC increase? 

June 08, 2018