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Crude Oil Prices Hit $64 Per Barrel, Highest Since 2015

The international benchmark of crude oil traded at $64.01, the highest the commodity has traded since November 2014.

Crude oil price rose to $64 on Tuesday, it has been on a rise since August 2017 when it traded at $47.47, the highest since President Muhammadu Buhari assumed office in May 2015.

“The price rise is a reaction to the uncertainty from Saudi Arabia,” the Chief Executive Officer, Sun Global Investments, Mihir Kapadi, told The Guardian.

Other factors have edged the oil price upwards. Saudi Arabia, Russia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan met over the weekend and said they were willing to maintain restrictions on oil production, to address a glut in supply and prop up prices.

The United Arab Emirates and Iraq have also said they would back an extension to production curbs, which were due to end in March 2018.

Recall that the Excess Crude Account, into which the country saves the difference between the market price of oil and the budget benchmark stood at about $4.11bn in October 2014, dropped to about $3.11bn in November and $2.45bn in December that year, and declined further into 2015.

According to the Ministry of Finance, the balance in the ECA stood at $2.309bn as of September 27, 2017, while the latest data from the Central Bank of Nigeria showed the nation’s external reserves rose to $33.93bn as of November 3, 2017.

Members and non-members of Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) had first agreed on cutting oil supply to the market to end supply glut, which amongst other factors led to a sharp drop in oil prices.

Nigeria and Libya had been exempted from the agreement to allow both countries stabilise their production.

Ibe Kachikwu, minister of state for petroleum resources had said Nigeria is not averse to joining the supply glut and that Nigeria would not mind keeping its production at 1.8 million barrels per day.

However, some members of OPEC have expressed concern over rising oil production from Nigeria and called for Nigeria to be included in the agreement.

 

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