Moscow: Oil producer group Opec is looking at extending or deepening a supply-cutting deal with non-member countries, two Opec ministers said on Wednesday, keeping open the prospect of additional action to get rid of a glut and prop up prices.
The agreement by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) and non-Opec producers including Russia to cut supply by about 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) runs until March 2018.
Iran's oil minister, among a number of Opec oil ministers in Moscow to attend an energy event, said he saw no objection within Opec to extending or even deepening the pact.
"It depends on a collective decision and consensus within OPEC, but I think there is no objection against this proposal," Iran's Bijan Zanganeh told Reuters, asked whether there were talks on deepening or extending the cut.
Asked to specify whether he meant no objection to deeper cuts, he replied: "Yes. I'm discussing."
The supply cut and rising global demand have started to whittle down excess supplies, helping oil last week to reach almost $60 a barrel, its highest in more than two years.
Venezuela's oil minister Eulogio del Pino also said there were discussions on whether to cut further or extend the deal.
Such a move would require the support of Opec's de facto leader Saudi Arabia and Russia, the largest deal participant outside the organisation. Russia has said it is premature to talk of extending the pact.
Opec has been urging other producers to join the supply pact. Del Pino said an extra 10 to 12 producing countries in South America and Africa had been invited to participate.
Two small producers not included in the agreement, Egypt and Turkmenistan, were invited to Opec's last meeting, held in May, but did not contribute any supply cuts.