Nigeria and Saudi leaders meet to discuss oil price

RIYADHNigerian president, Muhammadu Buhairi, has been in talks in Riyadh with Saudi Arabia's King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, in response to plans by Russia, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Venezuela to freeze oil production to January levels if other producers do likewise

Garba Shehu, a spokesperson for President Buhairi said that both countries are committed to a stable oil market and the drive towards an oil price rebound.

"The two leaders accepted the fact that their two economies are tied to oil and that all cannot be well with both countries when the world oil market is unstable," said Mr Shehu. "They therefore committed themselves to doing all that is possible to stabilise the market and rebound the oil price."

It is currently unclear what strategies Nigeria and Saudi Arabia will put in place to meet these aims. However, Nigeria's petroleum minister, Dr Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu told reporters in Qatar earlier this week that the country's oil production for February would be 2.2 mn bpd, unchanged from January. Dr Kachikwu also suggested that oil production in Nigeria could be increased for domestic consumption only.

"Nigeria will continue to look at the possibility of increasing production, not to sell it, because we have local consumption that is essential for us," said Dr Kachikwu. "Right now, we are not even exporting the quantity that OPEC has given us."

He added that demand from domestic refineries in Nigeria is currently at at least 500,00 mn bpd.

Dr Kachikwu also reflected on the state of play for Iran and Iraq, saying that if they are to return to the market, they shouldn't be frozen out "where they are" and should instead be frozen "at a higher level". He predicted that by June "we will come very close to tightening the market".

Following the visit to Saudi Arabia, President Buhairi and Dr Kachikwu will meet with leaders in Qatar to discuss oil price stability. 


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