Venezuela’s President meets with OPEC Secretary General in Caracas
17 Nov 2016
OPEC Secretary General, HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, yesterday (November 16) met in Caracas with the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro. The meeting took place at the Miraflores Palace and also present were the Minister of the President’s Office, HE Carmen Meléndez, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, HE Delcy Rodríguez, and the Minister of Petroleum, HE Eng. Eulogio Del Pino.
The President welcomed the OPEC Secretary General to Venezuela and congratulated him on assuming office. The two men had extensive discussions on various oil market-related issues, specifically the evolution of the market since the 170th (Extraordinary) Meeting of the OPEC Conference in Algiers at the end of September and the need to bring forward the oil market rebalancing and return stability to the market.
The President said he had taken note of the upward price trend in the weeks following the Algiers meeting, confirming the validity of the ‘Algiers Accord’, but added that the more recent downward price reversal was a sign of the urgent need to achieve its full implementation. He urged all Member Countries to demonstrate flexibility and give due consideration to the collective interests of the Organization in achieving the market stability everyone desires.
He said that he believed there was sufficient will among OPEC Member Countries to take the steps needed to reach an agreement by the end of the month and construct new mechanisms and strategies to help stabilize the market.
The President reiterated the position of Venezuela for a strong and proactive OPEC and acknowledged with appreciation the widespread consultations that are currently being carried out by all Member Countries, as well as non-OPEC producers. He also commended the Secretary General for his extensive efforts to build consensus and cohesiveness, before, during and since the Algiers meeting. The President added that he would continue with his exhaustive diplomacy efforts, following recent visits to both OPEC and non-OPEC producing countries, to ensure an agreement is reached.
The OPEC Secretary General said it was “a great honour” to be visiting Venezuela as the head of OPEC, given the fact that the idea for setting up the Organization originated in Venezuela. “This is the land of Juan Pablo Pérez Alfonzo, a great visionary leader who together with his friends and colleagues from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq and Kuwait got together in Baghdad in September 1960 to create this Organization,” he said.
He added that Venezuela has continued to be a very strong supporter of the Organization over the decades and praised the President for his great leadership role in striving to return balance and stability to the market through his intensive consultations with other Heads of State, both in OPEC Member Countries and those outside the Organization. He said that the President’s actions were “undertaken not only for Venezuela, but for all oil producers, as well as consumers too.”
Both men highlighted that the current oil industry cycle was probably the worst one seen in the past 50 years. The OPEC Secretary General stressed that “every producer, both within OPEC and outside, has been impacted negatively by the current cycle. The contraction in oil prices since mid-2014 knows no national boundaries.”
The OPEC Secretary General said his talks with the President had “strengthened my resolve and confidence” to keep working until we have a final agreement on the full implementation of the ‘Algiers Accord’.
The OPEC Secretary General is scheduled to meet with Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa today (November 17). He has also paid recent visits to Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates in the Organization’s efforts to accelerate the drawdown of the stock overhang, bring the market rebalancing forward, and ensure sustainable stability is restored to allow investments to return.
HE Nicolas Maduro, President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela (r) with HE Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, OPEC Secretary General
HE Eng. Eulogio Del Pino, Venezuela's Minister of Petroleum (l) with HE Barkindo, OPEC Secretary General