Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said global oil supplies are expected to grow in the coming months, paving the way for continued efforts by Opec and Russia to curb supplies that could last through 2019. This would see the kingdom and its allies doubling down on a production cuts policy at a time US production has been swelling and as Opec comes under fire from US president Donald Trump for boosting oil prices. Khalid al Falih said on Monday that joint action between global producers to release more barrels on to the market last year to prevent a market shortage — as the US imposed sanctions on Iran’s energy sector — had instead helped to create an oversupply. “We need to reverse that inventory build that took place in the second half of last year and already two months of this year,” he said, adding, “we think this will not happen in the first half of this year.” Meanwhile, production from US shale fields is accelerating. The International Energy Agency said last week the US will drive global oil supply growth over the next five years, adding another 4m b/d to the country’s rapidly increasing output. In December the group of 24 countries decided to reverse its strategy to add more barrels into the market, instead enacting supply cuts of 1.2m barrels a day. Financial Times

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