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OIL Wars – Not Price but Market Share

Saudi Arabia Changes to Allow Women to Travel Without Male Consent

The recent Oil Wars that broke out when a production cut agreement could not be reached by Saudi Arabia, OPEC Plus (just add Russia) and others in Vienna, Austria. The reason for a production cut was to ensure that the price of Oil held in the $60 to $70 range in 2020 and beyond. However, the Coronavirus spread damaged Oil demand around the world and Russia decided to walk away from all agreements with OPEC.

But this is an issue that points to market share and not price.

Over the past 5 years, Russia has been upset with OPEC as it has implemented production cuts with the view to raise prices, however, the result was that although OPEC decreased production by 4.4 million barrels per day, non-OPEC members, namely the United States, increased production by 5.7 million barrels per day. In short, the US and others took market share from OPEC members. You should look through this lens when thinking about Venezuela and Iran – both have been set back in terms of Oil production.

Russia, Saudi Arabia and the US combined now account for 40% of global crude oil market share, and all three want more market share. This war is using price as a tool to gain market share and put other parties on the back foot. Let the Market Share War begin !

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