Crude Realities

Non-OPEC producers might not be scared enough to cut oil output

Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak (C) speaks next to Mohammed bin Saleh al-Sada (R), President of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) during a press conference at the 23rd World Energy Congress on October 12, 2016 in Istanbul.
Ozan Kose | AFP | Getty Images

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries played hardball with oil producers over the last two years, and now the cartel wants nonmembers to take one more hit.

OPEC's free-market policy — which allowed crude prices to crater for two years — has created or worsened a host of problems in oil producing nations: budget deficits, recession, inflation and terms of trade shocks.

More than a dozen countries will meet this weekend to discuss cutting their output to amplify OPEC's commitment last week to slash its total production by 1.2 million barrels a day. Analysts warn that few of them will deliver.

Some of the countries attending the meeting are those most reliant on oil revenue — including Russia, Kazakhstan and Oman. Notable nowshows include Brazil and Norway.