Oil producers and officials from the European Union, anxious about a widening gap between energy supply and demand, are meeting on Friday to thrash out ways to stabilise the energy market.

Oil producers and officials from the European Union, anxious about a widening gap between energy supply and demand, are meeting on Friday to thrash out ways to stabilise the energy market.

The meeting is just ahead of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries ministerial meeting on December 12, where ministers are likely to agree to keep pumping full tilt to fill tanks and tame prices.

“Our common objective is to increase transparency, stability and predictability in the international oil market,” said EU Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs. He said the second joint meeting would review oil market developments and decisions taken by both sides since June. OPEC has been producing nearly flat out at around 30 million barrels per day (bpd) for months to curb prices that hit a record of $ 70.85 for US crude futures at the end of August. Prices have fallen steadily since then, hovering around $ 57 a barrel on Thursday.

“We will discuss the oil market situation and obviously producer and consumer issues related to dialogue and understanding,” a spokesman for Opec said. Opec will be represented by the cartel’s president Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahd al-Sabah of Kuwait, Nigerian petroleum minister Edmund Daukoru, who will be president next year, and Opec’s acting secretary general Adnan Shihab-Eldin. Speakers for the European Union will include Britain’s Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks, as well as Piebalgs.

Source : www.financialexpress.com