Are Russia And The Saudis Planning A Natural Gas Cartel?
The fledgling production cut strategy of OPEC (Saudi Arabia) and non-OPEC (Russia and the FSU) shows that a new strategy is needed to counter the ongoing doubts in the markets.
At the same time, Russia and Saudi continue to give indications of a possible OPEC 2.0 scenario, in which a possible Russian membership is on the table. This would confront the market with a renewed and stronger oil cartel, although the overall strategies need to be adjusted. At the same time, Saudi Arabia, via its oil giant Aramco has openly stated to be interested in global gas investment opportunities, starting in Russia’s Siberian region. While the media still looks at the current discussions as a pure crude oil cooperation strategy, some see another development on the horizon. The real power of OPEC, non-OPEC cooperation would increase if they would not only include a crude oil production cut, but also integrate the other (hidden) cartel, the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF). An OPEC 2.1, including gas exporters, would really block any negative developments in the market, even shale oil and gas.
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WNU Editor: I am not optimistic on the success of such a cartel. The same market forces that are now driving the price of oil are the same market forces driving the price of oil.