In a statement, Opec said its members were committed to a “stable and balanced oil market”. Speaking after the meeting, Saudi Arabia pledged that it would not flood the market by increasing production. The country’s energy minister, Khalid Al-Falih, said: “We will be very gentle in our approach and make sure we don’t shock the market in anyway.
“Opec members produce 40% of the world’s crude oil. A meeting of most Opec members, along with other oil exporters including Russia, similarly failed to cap output following a meeting in Qatar in April. John Hall, an oil analyst with alfaenergy, said:”Now that there is a realisation that Opec will not be restricting output, traders are caught long with too much oil in a falling market and so once $50 had been reached, there was a general mood to sell off rapidly.
After peaking at about $115 a barrel in the summer of 2014, the price of oil fell steadily to a low of about $27 in January this year due to a combination of weaker demand and increased supply. Opec secretary-general Abdulla al-Badri denied that the failure to cap output meant that the cartel was dead: “Opec will be powerful, will be strong. Opec is alive.”Bob Minter, analyst at Aberdeen Asset Management Investment, said: “This should have been an easy meeting to re-establish Opec relevance, but they missed the opportunity. “The oil ministers did agree that Nigeria’s Mohammed Sanusi Barkindo would become Opec’s new secretary-general from 1 August. The decision ended years of dispute between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which had put forward their own candidates and refused to agree on compromise. The ministers also agreed to admit Gabon as the 14th member of Opec from next month.