The global oil market should trust OPEC as the organization will not leave the market neglected, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said Friday.
As the 7th OPEC and non-OPEC ministerial meeting kicked off in Vienna, OPEC's largest producer Saudi Arabia tried to reassure both analysts and the world's media on its level of commitment to the global oil market.
"The market would have to trust us, the analysts would have to believe us, without which we cannot deliver what we want to achieve.
"It is as simple as that, and sometimes it is as tough as that," bin Salman said during his opening speech.
Saudi Arabia, the world's largest crude oil exporter, has been struggling with low oil prices and loss of market share since the end of 2014.
While the kingdom forced OPEC members to not cut their oil production in November 2014, this strategy led to an oil price plunge to below $30 per barrel in January 2016.
In December 2016, OPEC formed an alliance with some non-OPEC oil producing countries, including Russia, and agreed to lower their collective oil output by 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd).
An additional 1.2 million bpd of production cuts came from OPEC and its allies in December 2018, which is set to remain in effect until the end of March 2020.
OPEC, however, once again faces a low oil price environment, a glut of supply in the global oil market and loss of market share to U.S. shale oil.
"Without confronting the realities and attending to qualities, I don't think we would be achieving what we are aspiring for," bin Salman said.
"We want to assure the market and the analysts that we are doing our job properly. We will assure the market and ourselves that this market will not be left unattended," he added.
The Saudi-led 14-member OPEC meeting lasted for almost six hours on Thursday and concluded without reaching an agreement.
OPEC countries started negotiations with 10 members of the Russia-led non-OPEC producers on Friday after opening speeches from bin Salman, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak, and Venezuelan Minister of Petroleum Manuel Salvador Quevedo Fernandez who is also the president of the OPEC conference this year.
By Ovunc Kutlu in Vienna