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DOHA, April 17. /TASS/. Oil-producing countries from OPEC as well as non-OPEC members, met in Doha (Qatar) to discuss stabilization of oil prices, although the countries failed to conclude the agreement. Discussion of the agreement, which was to begin at 10:00 MSK and will last 1.5 hours, started after 15:00. According to sources of Reuters and Bloomberg, Saudi Arabia insists on changes in the draft agreement. A source in one of the delegations told TASS earlier that Saudi Arabia insists that all OPEC members, including Iran, join the agreement on freezing oil production.
The agreement on freezing oil production was not concluded, the next meeting in the same format will be held in June, Nigerian Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu told journalists on Sunday.
"We will try to meet sometime in June," he said. The Minister said that the meeting will held with the same participants.
Representatives of oil-producing countries at the meeting on freezing oil production in Doha have concluded they need more time to decide on freezing oil production, Minister of Energy and Industry of Qatar Mohammed Saleh Abdulla Al Sada told journalists on Sunday.
"The participants concluded that we all need time for further consultations between now and the next OPEC meeting in June," the Minister said.
According to him, the countries’ representatives discussed several mechanisms of freezing oil production and decided that more time is needed. "We looked at different proposals, different mechanisms. We evaluated every mechanism, devoted enough time to each scenario. After that, we decided that we need more time to look at other possible scenarios, or to agree to the scenarios that we discussed," the Minister said.
At the same time, the Minister said that the participants of the talks believe that the fundamental indicators of the oil market are improving. "First of all, participants of the meeting recognized that the oil market is now healthier than it was in February, we believe that fundamentals are improving," he said.
The Minister noted that oil prices are headed in the right direction, although it is not clear yet how long their final stabilization will take. "Oil prices are headed in the right direction, it is unclear how long it would take for the final stabilization, but it is definitely the right direction," the Minister said. At the same time, decline of investment in the oil industry will result in decline of production, the Minister said. "Decline of investment in the oil and gas sector will affect decline of production in the world," the Minister added.
Earlier, Azerbaijan's Energy Minister Natiq Aliyev said in an exclusive interview with TASS that draft agreement of the oil producer countries suggested "freezing" the production at January level through to October, 2016. However, Saudi Arabia requested to make "last-minute changes" in the draft agreement before the talks started, Reuters reported with reference to sources.
On February 16, in Doha, Qatar, oil ministers of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Venezuela, members of OPEC, and Russia’s Energy Minister Alexander Novak held talks on improvement of the situation with oil prices. The parties expressed readiness to maintain oil production on the level of January of 2016, if other oil producing countries join this initiative.