DUBAI Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih is expected to travel to the Qatari capital, Doha, this week for meetings with oil-producing countries on the sidelines of an energy forum, three sources familiar with the matter said.Falih was expected to meet other energy ministers from OPEC and possibly Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak on Friday, the sources said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the meetings were not made public. It was not immediately clear whether Falih would meet Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh, the sources said, as there was no confirmation from Tehran yet on whether Zanganeh would attend the gas forum.The 18th Ministerial Meeting of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) will convene on Nov. 17 in Doha. Qatar and Russia are members of the GECF, while Saudi Arabia is not a member.
In September, OPEC agreed at a meeting in Algeria on modest, preliminary, oil output cuts in the first such deal since 2008, with special conditions given to Libya, Nigeria and Iran, whose output has been hit by wars and sanctions.
But Iran, which remains the main stumbling block to a final deal, has refused to cap production below 4 million barrels per day (bpd) as it seeks to regain market share lost under sanctions. Tehran said it pumped 3.92 million bpd in October.OPEC ministers are due to meet on Nov. 30 in Vienna to decide on output policy and finalise the Algeria agreement.
(Reporting by Rania El Gamal; Editing by Dale Hudson)
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