Saudi Arabia and Russia’s desire to open the spigots to cool the surging price of oil is heading for a World Cup style gang tackle from Iran, Venezuela and Iraq at the OPEC meeting in Vienna on Friday.
According to Bloomberg, quoting Iran OPEC representative Hossein Kazempour Ardebili, any agreement to raise or cut output agreement requires unanimity from the Vienna meeting and any attempt at increased production will meet with resistance.
Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak has suggested a desired output of 1.5 million barrels a day is the target, while Saudi Arabia has flagged an increase of between 500,000 to 1 million barrels.
Russia and Saudia Arabia have an ally in U.S. President Donald Trump, with the White House pushing for lower oil prices to boost the Republican Party’s prospects in mid-term elections coming up in November.
The International Energy Agency has estimated that U.S. sanctions will hit Iran and Venezuela hard next year, costing both countries up to 30% of their oil production. This shortfall is expected to be taken up by Saudi and Russian output.
Apart from the world’s two biggest oil exporters, most OPEC countries would reportedly battle to increase production.