The world’s largest oil producer, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt had broken off their diplomatic relations with Qatar in the summer of 2017 and imposed a traffic and trade blockade against the Gulf State. They accuse the neighbor of supporting „terrorism“ and maintaining close ties with Shiite Iran, the arch rival of Saudi Arabia in the region. Doha rejects the allegations.
The retreat from Opec reflects Qatar’s desire to focus on increasing gas production, quoted Qatar Petroleum as Energy Minister. In recent years, the country has been working ceaselessly to develop a future strategy based on growth – according to al-Kaabi, Qatar wants to increase its gas production from 77 million tons to 110 million tons by 2024 at the latest. The gas comes from the South Pars field off the coast of the emirate, the largest gas field in the world. Qatar, the largest LNG producer in the world, shares it with Iran; The Gulf Emirate currently supplies the global market approximately 30 percent of the total.
After leaving the country in January, Qatar has a long membership in the Oillands Association: it has been a member of the Emirate since 1961. It is Opec’s eleventh largest oil producer, with a production of about 610,000 barrels a day in October.
Important Opec meeting is imminent
Meanwhile, the price of oil has risen sharply at the beginning of the week. The price of a barrel (159 liters) of the North Sea Brent rose by 5 percent to more than $ 62. The price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) American crude increased by $ 2.70 to $ 53.63. First of all, this is a significant turnaround in the decline since the beginning of October, which had dropped the price of Brent from $ 85 to less than $ 60.
Experts attributed the increase in prices, above all, to the extension of a pact between Russia and Saudi Arabia for greater control of the oil market. This should pave the way for a reduction in the production of the world’s major oil producing countries, which should cut supply.