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6

OPEC bulletin 5–7/17

C o n f e r e n c e N o t e s

1 7 2

n d

M e e t i n g o f t h e C o n f e r e n c e

A

t a time of continuing challenges for the world’s

oil producers, the OPECConference held its 172

nd

Meeting at the OPEC Secretariat in Vienna. With

more than 100 participants representing each of the

Organization’s 13 Member Countries, the semi-annual

gathering was an occasion for the Conference to con-

sider oil market developments since it last met at the

end of November.

In an opening address, the President of the OPEC

Conference, Khalid A Al-Falih, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of

Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources, stated that “the

main focus for today remains on consolidating, strength-

ening and accelerating the process of rebalancing, along-

side the important task of drawing down global oil inven-

tories.” His comments underscored the importance for

open discussions on the ongoing challenges facing the

oil market.

Delegates to the Conference then reviewed the oil

market outlook for the remainder of 2017 and considered

various reports, including those from both the Secretary

General, as well as the Organization’s Economic

Commission Board. Overall, the oil market situation

showed marked improvement since the 171

st

Meeting

of the Conference held on November 30, 2016.

The Conference President noted: “We started with a

bearish sentiment, but the market is now well on its way

toward rebalancing. We have more work to do in lower-

ing inventories toward the last five-year average, but we

are on the right track.”

In the meantime, the Conference President said he

expected global conditions to continue improving —

“assisted by a more robust global economy and higher

GDP growth in 2017, as well as fairly healthy oil demand

growth this year, particularly in Asia.”

He also reminded delegates of the main task before

them, emphasizing that “nurturing a constructive and sta-

ble market environment is our highest priority.” Ensuring

a sustainable future for oil supply and demand — and

Eng Carlos E Pérez, Minister of Hydrocarbons, Ecuador.

Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima, Minister of Industry, Mines and Energy,

Equatorial Guinea.