Saudi Arabia's energy minister says there are no plans to abolish OPEC

Key Points
  • "There is no consideration whatsoever to eliminate OPEC," al-Falih said at the ADIPEC oil summit in Abu Dhabi on Monday.
  • It comes shortly after reports surfaced Thursday suggesting Saudi Arabia's top government-funded think tank had been studying the potential impact on oil markets should the influential 14-member alliance breakup.
Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid Al Falih, attends a news conference after a meeting of the 4th Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC Ministerial Meeting in Vienna, Austria ob June 23, 2018.
Askin Kiyagan | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Saudi Arabia is not preparing for a break-up of OPEC, Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said Monday, adding the group will continue as the global central bank for oil markets for a long time.

It comes shortly after reports surfaced Thursday suggesting Saudi Arabia's top government-funded think tank had been studying the potential impact on oil markets should the influential 14-member alliance breakup.

"There is no consideration whatsoever to eliminate OPEC," al-Falih said at the ADIPEC oil summit in Abu Dhabi on Monday.

"The reason they call them think tanks is because they want to think outside the box," he added.

Next OPEC meeting 'going to be interesting'

On Thursday, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter, that the King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center in Riyadh was trying to understand how energy markets would respond to a world without OPEC.

The reported study comes less than a month before OPEC and non-OPEC members are scheduled to re-convene in Austria, Vienna in order to vote on its next policy decision.

On Sunday, top exporters at the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) meeting in Abu Dhabi said they would not shy away from another round of production cuts.

This appeared to an abrupt turnabout from OPEC's September meeting, when some of the world's leading oil producers were talking about pumping extra oil onto the market in order to help soothe intensifying supply shock fears.

"We have been through a very difficult and turbulent year-and-a-half … The next meeting is going to be interesting," Suhail Al Mazrouei, the United Arab Emirates' minister of energy and industry and OPEC president, said at a press conference Monday.

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