OPEC and its non-OPEC oil producing counterparts cemented a new era of cooperation at their May 25 meeting in Vienna, reaching a unanimous decision to extend their production agreement aimed at reducing global oil stock levels through March 2018.
Walid Khadduri is a former non-resident fellow at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington. Formerly, he was the director of information and international relations at the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries in Kuwait and the managing director and editor-in-chief of the Middle East Economic Survey (MEES). Additionally, he was the editor of the economic section of the Arab-daily Al-Hayat, as well as a weekly columnist.
Khadduri has served as a researcher at the Royal Scientific Society in Amman, Jordan; the director of research at the Institute for Palestine Studies in Beirut, Lebanon; and an instructor in the Department of Political Science at Kuwait University.
Khadduri received the 1993 Award for Excellence in Written Journalism from the International Association for Energy Economics. During the 2008 OPEC Summit he received an award from Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah for recognition of outstanding journalism in the field of petroleum and its industry, contributing to the awareness of the roles of petroleum and OPEC in the global economy. In 2009, he received the first OPEC Award for journalism for an outstanding career in oil and energy reporting. He received an award from the Iraqi Economic Network for his excellence in energy economics and his contributions in informing international public opinion about the Iraqi economic sector in 2013. Additionally, in 2014 he received the Abd Allah Bin Hamad al-Attiya award for Lifelong Achievement in Energy Journalism.
Khadduri is the editor of Abd Allah al-Turaiqi Collected Works (Center for Arab Unity Studies, 1st edition 1999, 2nd edition 2005). He is also the author of many articles on the Middle East petroleum industry, global oil and gas markets, and Middle East geopolitics
Khadduri obtained a bachelor’s degree in social sciences from Michigan State University and holds a master’s degree and PhD from the Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).
Oil prices cascaded to their lowest level in more than three months in mid-March as a confluence of bearish reports heightened market concerns that resurgent shale oil production will undermine OPEC’s strategy to accelerate a drawdown in global oil inventories.
OPEC’s new oil production targets call for a relatively modest cut of 4.5 percent but the agreement is expected to deliver dividends amounting to billions of dollars in additional government revenue in 2017.
OPEC’s oil ministers and technical experts have been holding marathon consultations on the parameters for a production-cut agreement leading up to the ministerial council meeting on November 30 in Vienna, with optimism among the group building that a formal deal is now possible.
OPEC oil producers are reaping the rewards of their September 28 agreement in principle to reduce production levels, with oil prices rising to the highest levels in more than a year and now trading in a $50-52 per barrel (bbl) range.
The growing importance of gas in a region dominated by giant oil reserves and high oil production capacity has been fueled by explosive population growth, urbanization, increased standards of living, and industrialization in the Gulf Arab states.
In a significant policy reversal, OPEC members opted to revert to their traditional market management strategy of production targets to reduce the global oil supply glut during meetings that took place on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum in Algiers, September 26-28.
Expectations that a much anticipated rebalancing of oversupplied oil markets would take hold in the third quarter of 2016 have been dashed after the International Energy Agency sharply revised its earlier projections in its latest monthly report.