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Saudis Say OPEC Won’t Cut to Offset Rising U.S. Shale Output

by Will Brackett

Senior Saudi energy officials told top independent U.S. oil firms in a closed-door meeting this week that they should not assume OPEC would extend output curbs to offset rising production from U.S. shale fields, two industry sources told Reuters on Thursday.

Oil producers led by Saudi Arabia and top non-OPEC exporter Russia are in an uneasy truce with U.S. shale firms after a two-year price war that sent many shale producers to the wall. The Saudis and Russia led a deal to curb output in late 2016 to end a global supply glut that pushed oil prices to a 12-year low.

The resulting rise in oil prices has sparked a rush of new output by shale producers, who this week outlined ambitious production growth plans across the United States.

 Speaking at an industry conference in the U.S. energy capital of Houston on Tuesday, Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said that there would be no “free rides” for U.S. shale producers benefiting from the upturn.

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