Qatar set to withdraw from OPEC beginning January 2019, says Energy Minister

By QLNews

In a surprise move, Qatar has announced that it will withdraw from the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) effective January 1, 2019.

Qatar’s Minister of State for Energy Affairs HE Saad Sherida Al Kaabi, who made this announcement during a Press conference in Doha, said OPEC had already been informed about the country’s decision, reported The Peninsula.

The decision came after Qatar, one of OPEC’s smallest producers but the world’s largest liquefied natural gas exporter, reviewed ways to enhance its role internationally and plan long-term strategy, including focusing on its gas industry.

“Qatar has decided to withdraw its membership form OPEC effective January 2019 and this decision was communicated to OPEC this morning,” Al Kaabi was quoted as saying by Reuters.

However, Qatar will still attend an OPEC meeting in Vienna this week.

The announcement comes ahead of the meeting by OPEC and its allies including Russia on December 6 and 7 to discuss cutting supply.

The minister said the decision was not easy as Qatar has been an OPEC member for 57 years. However, he added that the country’s impact on OPEC production decisions was small.

He stressed Doha would continue to abide by all its commitments like any other non-OPEC oil producer.

The withdrawal decision reflects Qatar’s intent to focus its efforts on developing its natural gas industry. Qatar is looking at shoring up its LNG production from 77 million tonnes a year to 110 million tonnes annually.

The minister also said the decision was not linked to the illegal siege of Qatar, which has been in place since June 2017.

By dingding• 2 weeks 1 day ago.

Nowadays trump dictates the oil price. Opec a failure.

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