A show of hands among delegates at the Oil & Money conference in London on 18 October indicated that a good three-quarters thought meaningful Opec production cuts were unlikely. But Opec Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo was, unsurprisingly, more positive. He says that an Opec technical committee will meet in Vienna on 28 October to hammer out the framework for a planned deal the following month. They will be joined by a “high level” delegation from Russia and from other non-Opec countries. However he side-stepped a question as to whether US representatives would be invited, although his response indicated this is highly unlikely.

In any case, as John Hess quipped, the US has “already contributed 1mn b/d” to cutting global output – referring to the fall in shale production over the past 18 months – so there is no point in asking for more. (CONTINUED - 138 WORDS)