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Brent Crude Continues Upward March, as It Hit $64 Per Barrel


Global oil benchmark, Brent crude, has continued to soar higher as it hit a 28-month high on Monday as Saudi Arabia’s crown prince cracked down on corrupt royal families and others.
Brent, against which Nigeria’s crude oil is priced, rose by $2 to $64.07 per barrel as of 8:03pm Nigerian time, more than $19 higher than the country’s oil price benchmark of $44.5 per barrel for this year’s budget.
“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.
Meanwhile, Nigeria has expressed support for an extension of a deal between the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Russia and other non-members to cut oil supply until the end of 2018 “as long as the right terms are on the table” regarding its own participation.
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, said there was growing agreement among other members of OPEC to extend the deal.
“There isn’t any reason to change what is a winning formula,” he told Reuters, adding, “There is a consensus to extend. The issue will be the duration.”
Nigeria itself, however, is exempt from the deal.
OPEC, along with Russia and nine other producers agreed to cut oil output by about 1.8 million barrels per day until March 2018 in an attempt to ease a global excess that weighed on prices.

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