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UAE denies US envoy’s statements regarding oil production

March 10, 2022 at 10:19 am

Yousef Al-Otaiba, United Arab Emirates (UAE) ambassador to the US in California, US on 30 April 2019 [Kyle Grillot/Bloomberg via Getty Images]

The UAE denied the statements of its Ambassador in Washington, Yousef Al-Otaiba, in which he said that Abu Dhabi prefers an increase in oil production and will urge OPEC to consider raising production.

The UAE expressed its commitment to the current agreement to reduce oil production within the OPEC+ alliance, hours after refuting statements by its ambassador in Washington.

Energy Minister Suhail Al-Mazrouei confirmed, in a tweet, that “The UAE is committed to the OPEC+ agreement and its existing monthly production adjustment mechanism.”

Al-Mazrouei also tweeted: “The UAE believes in the value OPEC+ brings to the oil market.”

After Al-Otaiba’s statements, global oil prices fell yesterday by the largest percentage since the early days of the global pandemic nearly two years ago.

Oil and gas prices have skyrocketed since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on 24 February. On Tuesday, the US announced a ban on Russian oil and gas imports, which means that the crisis is likely to expand.

READ: Arab neutrality over Ukraine is threatened by Western pressure to condemn Russia

The OPEC+ countries, which include a group of exporting countries and non-exporting countries, led by Riyadh and Moscow, are resisting Western pressure to increase production.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE, and to a lesser extent Kuwait and Iraq, are the only OPEC countries capable of pumping more oil. They have a reserve capacity estimated at between 2.5 million and 3 million barrels per day.

However, pumping these additional quantities will not compensate for the decline in Russian exports.

On Tuesday, German Energy Minister Robert Habeck made an “urgent appeal” to the OPEC group to “increase production” in order to curb the rise in prices.

In May 2020, the OPEC + alliance began implementing an agreement to reduce oil production by 9.7 million barrels per day, with the aim of restoring balance to energy markets, this was later eased.

Reuters quoted an informed Emirati source saying that the UAE will not act unilaterally and raise oil production.