[CARACAS] Opec members are close to reaching an agreement on how to stabilise the market, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said after speaking to his counterparts from Iran and Ecuador.
Mr Maduro held "positive discussions" with fellow members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries who attended the Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement, he said Sunday at a press conference following the event, in which 15 heads of state gathered in the South American country.
Mr Maduro said he spoke with Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the summit and that he hopes an accord can be reached by the end of the month.
"We are close to an agreement between Opec and non-Opec countries to stabilise the market," state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA wrote on Twitter, citing Mr Maduro. A "definitive answer" for market stability could come this month, he said, according to PDVSA.
Ministers from all 14 member nations of Opec, as well as the energy minister of Russia plan to have informal discussions about the oil market in Algiers on Sept 27 on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum.
News of the meeting has fanned speculation that producers may agree on an output cap to shore up prices that are languishing below US$50 a barrel nearly two years into the largest market crash in a generation. If the ministers reach a consensus in Algeria, Opec may call a special meeting, secretary general Mohammed Barkindo said on Sunday, according to Algeria's official news agency.
Brent crude, the global benchmark, was up 1.8 per cent at US$46.57 a barrel as of 11:22am Singapore time.