Oil prices have reached their highest level since November last year, thus helping ease the financial crisis now gripping Algeria and market experts surmise that this upward trend is likely to go on due to current geopolitical developments in various parts of the world.
The price of a barrel of crude oil from the global benchmark, “Brent”, the basket of Algerian oil, exceeded the threshold of $ 66 dollars per barrel for the first time in four months, while the price of a barrel of light US crude “Texas crude” reached $ 56 dollars a barrel on the world market.
Observers are signaling that the hike in prices is due to lesser market supply by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and other partner countries such as Russia, as well as to the US sanctions against Iran and Venezuela’s ongoing political crisis.
Prices are also bolstered by hopes of a breakthrough in the US-China trade negotiations, which have caused the Chinese economy to slow down because of sanctions imposed by Washington, and this adverse situation has dampened China’s demand for oil.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), at its last meeting with its non-OPEC partners, decided to slash its oil exports by 1.2 million barrels a day, which has contributed to reducing the supply of oil on world markets.
Saudi Arabia, as stated by its oil minister, Mr. Khalid al-Faleh, plans to produce about 9.8 million barrels per day of oil in March 2019, a level that is less than half a million barrels per day than the level of its scheduled output, although Saudi Arabia pumped more than 11 million barrels per day in November and December 2018.