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Oil price fall should not be explained by US plot — Russia's top diplomat

May 19, 2015, 19:31 UTC+3 MOSCOW
A fall in world oil prices has made "most of US shale gas deposits unprofitable," the Russian foreign minister said
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©  EPA/YURI KOCHETKOV

MOSCOW, May 19. /TASS/. A fall in world oil prices should not be explained by a plot of the United States acting in tandem with Saudi Arabia, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with Rossiiskaya Gazeta daily on Tuesday.

There are a lot of factors behind the oil price decline, the foreign minister said.

"Americans would have hardly invested billions of US dollars in shale gas development with all ensuing environmental risks just to annoy us [Russia]," Lavrov said.

A fall in world oil prices has made "most of US shale gas deposits unprofitable," the Russian foreign minister said.

It is hardly probable that the US administration has asked American private companies engaged in shale hydrocarbon production to put up with low oil prices and wait till better times, Lavrov said.

"China’s economic growth has slightly slowed down and a slowdown even by one percentage point is quite much for the Chinese economy and this factor has immediately had its effect," the foreign minister said.

"The Saudis do not want to reduce either output or exports, although they are suffering from this and there are the signs of an emerging budget deficit, considering Saudi Arabia's numerous plans," Lavrov said.

Saudi Arabia doesn’t want to reduce oil output so as not to lose its place on the market, Lavrov said.

"I don’t think that there is a tie-up," the Russian foreign minister said, "although some present this in a way that Russia is losing an oil platform beneath its feet. But I wouldn’t support a conspiracy theory in this case.".

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