OPEC, Russia approve biggest ever oil cut amid coronavirus pandemic

BAKU/DUBAI/LONDON — OPEC and allies led by Russia agreed on Sunday to cut oil output by a record amount — representing around 10 percent of global supply — to support oil prices amid the coronavirus pandemic, and sources said effective cuts could amount to as much as 20 percent. Measures to slow the spread of …

BAKU/DUBAI/LONDON — OPEC and allies led by Russia agreed on Sunday to cut oil output by a record amount — representing around 10 percent of global supply — to support oil prices amid the coronavirus pandemic, and sources said effective cuts could amount to as much as 20 percent.

Measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus have destroyed demand for fuel and driven down oil prices, straining budgets of oil producers and hammering the US shale industry, which is more vulnerable to low prices due to its higher costs.

The group, known as OPEC+, said it had agreed to reduce output by 9.7 million barrels per day (bpd) for May-June, after four days of marathon talks and following pressure from US President Donald Trump to arrest the price decline.

In the biggest oil output cut ever, exceeding four times the cuts approved during the 2008 financial crisis, the countries will keep gradually decreasing curbs on production in place for two years until April 2022.

“The big Oil Deal with OPEC+ is done. This will save hundreds of thousands of energy jobs in the United States,” Trump wrote on Twitter, thanking Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi King Salman for pushing the deal through.

“I just spoke to them… Great deal for all,” Trump said.

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