Oil slides as Saudi Arabia-Russia talks delayed

Marco Green
April 6, 2020

Trump has been seeking to broker a production cut agreement between Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation, the second- and third-largest oil producers, following their fallout last month.

"I don't see how an agreement can be reached if we are in a war of words at the moment", a Saudi oil official said.

The United States has amassed 337,915 cases and 9,662 deaths.

When asked at a White House press briefing Sunday under what conditions he would impose the levies, Trump said, 'If the oil price stays the way it is.I would do that, yeah, very substantial tariffs'.

US President Donald Trump has said he will impose tariffs on crude imports if he needed to "protect" America's energy workers from the oil price crash that has been exacerbated by the war between Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia over market share.

Neither country has confirmed his comments, but Trump expects tariffs can be avoided.

'I would use tariffs if I had to, ' Trump said.

"If they don't get along, I would do that".

Experts said the oil war may strain the relationship between the two countries.

Oil prices pulled back following a week of historic gains after OPEC and its allies postponed a virtual meeting to discuss production cuts.

While Trump noted the low oil prices buoyed the battered airline industry and helped consumers, he reiterated his support for the oil sector. "We're not going to surrender our industry and we're prepared to go the distance here", Kenney said.

"If the Americans don't take part, the problem that existed before for the Russians and Saudis will remain - that they cut output while the USA ramps it up, and that makes the whole thing impossible", said Fyodor Lukyanov, head of the Council on Foreign and Defence Policy, a research group that advises the Kremlin.

Global oil demand has fallen by about 20 million barrels a day, or one-fifth, due the coronavirus pandemic, sending oil prices to their lowest in almost 20 years.

But Russia refused to join to agreement.

The New York Stock Exchange Opening Bell rings on Friday.

Canada's oil-rich province of Alberta is negotiating with the USA on the possibility of introducing North America-wide tariffs on Russian and Saudi oil unless the two states strike a new OPEC+ deal soon, the province's Premier Jason Kenney revealed in an interview with the Financial Times.

The alliance was key to competing with a surge in American oil production that turned the United States into a major crude exporter for the first time in decades.

There were also signs of progress: Norway, which hasn't joined any production cuts since 2002, signalled over the weekend it was ready to cut unilaterally its output if others did, and a senior official from the oil-rich Canadian province of Alberta said it will dial-in on the oil meeting.

The meeting delay came as President Donald Trump pushed for the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, or OPEC, which is led by the Saudis, and its allies to find a way to stabilize global oil markets. "Very substantial tariffs. I would absolutely do that", Trump said April 5 during a press conference, adding he wanted to protect the US oil industry, the world's largest by production.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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