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Oil exploration   The dates have not been agreed on

Russia willing to hold 1st OPEC/non-OPEC monitoring group meeting

Alexander NovakRussia suggested to the five-country committee monitoring the OPEC-led global oil production cut to meet around January 20 but no final decision on the date has been taken so far, Russia's energy minister Alexander Novak said.

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"The dates have not been agreed on. The work is under way. We believe we have to meet around the 20th," Novak said.

Following the landmark six-month agreement by OPEC countries to cut their crude output by 1.2 million b/d from October levels, 11 non-OPEC countries led by Russia agreed to join the initiative by cutting their combined output by 558,000 b/d. Of this, Russia's commitment is 300,000 b/d cut.

There is still a widespread skepticism in the market whether the countries will be able to fully deliver on their commitments.

The monitoring committee's discussion is to focus on the mechanism of monitoring each country's production cuts and enforcing the agreement, although what the committee can and will do in the case of non-compliance remains an open question.

Chaired by Kuwait, the committee also includes Venezuela and Algeria from OPEC, as well as non-OPEC Russia and Oman.


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