MOSCOW, November 21. /TASS/. Russian oil companies discussed the possibility of extending the OPEC deal to reduce oil production for another six months after it expires in March 2018 at a meeting with Energy Minister Alexander Novak last week. Almost all companies said they were ready to extend the agreement, two sources that participated in the meeting told TASS.
"Extending the deal was discussed," one of the sources told TASS, noting that Rosneft did not express disagreement.
It was earlier planned to discuss the agreement at a meeting between Novak and heads of oil companies in Khanty-Mansiysk on November 21.
According to another source, the final decision might be made at a meeting of companies with the Energy Ministry. The meeting is likely to be held near the end of November, before the conference of the OPEC countries and other participants in the Vienna agreement.
One of the sources told TASS that despite consultations with companies, the final decision "will still be made by senior officials" and "it might be completely different". Earlier, Russian President Vladimir Putin said extending the deal until the end of 2018 was preferable.
TASS source in OPEC said that Russia and Saudi Arabia have already reached a consensus on the extension of the deal.
The fate of the OPEC+ agreement on reducing oil production after March 2018 is the main issue on the agenda of the countries participating in the deal. According to TASS source in OPEC, since almost all participants of the deal confirmed their readiness to extend it, the only remaining question is when to make a decision - at a meeting in November or at an extraordinary meeting in early 2018.