Qatar OPEC meet ends without freeze

Qatar OPEC meet ends without freeze
Updated 19 April 2016

Qatar OPEC meet ends without freeze

Qatar OPEC meet ends without freeze

DOHA: Oil-producing nations at a Qatar summit failed to reach an agreement Sunday on a production freeze, saying officials needed “more time” to make the decision as Iran stayed home and vowed to keep pumping.
The hourslong meeting in Doha resembled a failed OPEC meeting in December that saw crude oil prices tumble on the bloc’s indecision. The fact that producers couldn’t agree to even freezing production at near-record January figures likely means oil prices will drop again Monday.
Speaking to journalists after the summit, Mohammed bin Saleh Al-Sada, Qatar’s energy and industry minister, said the 18 countries gathered for the meeting believed “the fundamentals of the market are generally improving.”
However, he largely dodged the questions about whether another special summit will be called before OPEC’s next meeting in June and whether Iran had anything to do with the breakdown of the talks.
“We of course respect their position and ... we still don’t know how the future will unroll but it was a sovereign decision by Iran,” said Al-Sada, who is serving as OPEC’s president. “The freeze could be more effective definitely if major producers, be it from OPEC members like Iran and others, as well as non-OPEC members, are included in the freeze.”
Iran decided to stay home late Saturday after saying the day before it would send an emissary to the meeting. Speaking to Iranian state television, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zangeneh said it didn’t make sense to send any representative from the Islamic Republic “as we are not part of the decision to freeze output.”
“We can’t cooperate with them to freeze our own output, and in other words impose sanctions on ourselves,” Zangeneh said.