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Oil hits multi-year highs after OPEC+ talks collapse


LONDON:

Oil prices climbed to multi-year highs on Tuesday after OPEC+ producers clashed over plans to raise supply to meet rising global demand.

Brent crude hit a session high of $77.84, a level not seen since October 2018, before losing momentum and easing to trade $0.25, or 0.3%, lower at $76.91 a barrel by 1149 GMT.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures traded up $0.75, or 1%, at $76.91, after reaching $76.98 earlier in the session, the highest since November 2014.

Ministers from OPEC+, which groups producers from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) with Russia and others, abandoned talks on Monday as negotiations failed to close divisions within the group.

No date for further talks has been announced.

The United Arab Emirates said it would go along with output increases, but rejected a separate proposal to extend curbs to end-2022 from an existing April deadline.

Some OPEC+ sources said they still believed OPEC+ would resume discussions this month and agree to pump more from August while others said current curbs might stay in place.

Goldman Sachs said the collapse of the talks has introduced uncertainty into the group’s production path, while maintaining its view of an $80 per barrel Brent price and gradual increase in output early next year.

 “The differences between both parties seem surmountable as they agree on ramping up production into year-end with the still high uncertainty for 2022 oil balances making a pledge to any long-term commitment unnecessary at present,” the bank said.

The Biden administration is pushing for a compromise solution in the talks, a White House spokesperson said on Monday.

 “We are not a party to these talks, but administration officials have been engaged with relevant capitals to urge a compromise solution that will allow proposed production increases to move forward,” the spokesperson said.

Iraqi Oil Minister Ihsan Abdul Jabbar said on Monday that his country does not want to see oil prices soaring above current levels and that he hoped that within 10 days a date would be set for a new OPEC+ meeting.

In a sign of a tightening market, top oil exporter Saudi Arabia raised the August official selling prices of all crude grades it sells to Asia, the country’s state oil producer Aramco said on Tuesday.

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