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Equatorial Guinea Backs Saudi Arabian Calls for a Stable Oil Market

At a time when global oil markets are experiencing significant volatility, member countries of OPEC+ have the means to address these challenges, and Equatorial Guinea will continue to support efforts to improve market stability.

In a recent statement, His Royal Highness Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, Minister of Energy of Saudi Arabia, emphasized that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies have the commitment, flexibility and means to directly address ongoing market challenges. As thin liquidity and extreme volatility undermine the market’s core function while introducing new risks for the value chain, employing tactics to ensure market stability and reduce volatility are key, now more than ever. As the OPEC President for 2023, Equatorial Guinea fully supports HRH Prince Abdulaziz in his pursuit of stability, as do other producing countries in Africa.

Currently, the state of the global oil and gas market can be described as more of a disconnect between the paper and physical, with a lack of sufficient liquidity resulting in paper markets unable to effectively reflect the realities of physical markets. HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman offers a clear explanation, emphasizing that “in a way, the market is in a state of schizophrenia, and this is creating a type of yo-yo market, sending erroneous signals at times when greater visibility and clarity and well-functioning markets are needed more than ever to allow market participants to efficiently hedge and manage the huge risks and uncertainties they face.”

Essentially, this disconnect has significantly impacted market operations, a trend which has only been amplified with the “unsubstantiated stories about demand destruction, recurring news about the return of large volumes of supply, and ambiguity and uncertainty about the potential impacts of price caps, embargoes and sanctions.” As such, the need to address this disconnect and usher in a new era of market stability and growth is of uttermost importance, and OPEC+ represents the solution.

“Over the last two years, OPEC+ have made clear its role in stabilizing and strengthening global oil and gas markets, and in 2022, this will only continue. As HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman stated, OPEC+ have the means to create stability, whether this is through production cuts or any other method. As an OPEC member and the 2023 organization President, Equatorial Guinea fully supports OPEC+ and the methods it employs to ensure stability,” stated H.E. Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima, Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons of Equatorial Guinea, adding that, “Producing markets in Africa have and will continue to support the calls for market stability and the reduction in volatility. For Africa, ushering in stability will not only be key for mature and emerging oil and gas markets, but will reduce risks for market participants, allowing them to efficiently hedge and manage uncertainties. As many countries in Africa begin their journeys towards becoming producers, ensuring well-functioning markets will be key.”

As HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman states, “witnessing this recent harmful volatility disturb the basic functions of the market and undermine the stability of oil markets will only strengthen our resolve.”

The African Energy Chamber fully supports and endorses this position.

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