APS : TUESDAY 29 DECEMBER 2020
ALGIERS- Algeria has played in 2020 a key role in bringing visions closer within the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies OPEC+, in order to reach a joint action aimed
at rebalancing the oil market which has experienced a drastic drop in demand and prices because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
This role was played through Algeria’s presidency, in 2020, of four international and regional energy organizations, namely OPEC, the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC), the Organization of African Petroleum Exporting Countries and the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (CECF).
In this regard, Algeria has made considerable efforts to reduce the production and rebalance the oil market since the beginning of the crisis in March 2020 through discussions with all the concerned players.
These efforts were conducted as part of the Declaration of Cooperation, signed on 10 December 2016, following discussions that took place during the 170th extraordinary meeting of the OPEC Ministerial Conference, held in Algiers in September 2016.
The war of prices which started in 2014 ended with Algiers Consensus, which was confirmed in November 2016 in the meeting held in Vienna, said the international oil expert Mourad Preure.
“Algiers Consensus, which brings together countries representing 90% of the global reserves and 50% of the production, was a strong signal to the market which continued to rise”, he said.
For him “Algiers Consensus showed its strength, devoting to producers a defense line of prices absolutely essential for the current conditions.”
Four years later, OPEC found itself facing a new oil market crisis caused notably by the restrictions implemented worldwide to contain the spread of Coronavirus.
To deal with the drop in oil prices, Algeria has maintained its commitment to dialogue between OPEC and its allies, despite the failure of the meeting of 6 March 2020, followed by the outbreak of a war of prices.
The continuation of consultations allowed reaching in April an agreement dubbed “historic” on the massive decrease of production over two years.
While OPEC+ producers were planning to increase their production in the beginning of 2021, they had to face Covid-19 second wave and it is in this regard that it was decided to reconsider the expected increase of 1.9 million barrels a day and cut it to 500,000 barrels a day.
This decision and the commitments taken since April allowed restoring prices progressively which exceeded 50 dollars the barrel in the beginning of December after a 19-dollar drop in April.