Aleksandr Novak: ''We have not moved away from our proposals for dialogue with the US and the EU''

According to Minister of Energy of Russia Aleksandr Novak, the country will continue its cooperation with OPEC after the end of an agreement on output cuts. Russia is content to strengthen its economic and political ties with Saudi Arabia and ready to ''work with everyone in all areas'' including its ideological rivals.

Russia and other countries need to work together to develop competition and to work out joint solutions to global challenges, said Russian Minister of Energy Aleksandr Novak in his interview with CNBC. It is important not to isolate yourself and to avoid protectionism, considers the minister. Russia has not moved away from its proposals for dialogue with the United States and the European Union: it still wants to develop collaboration in the energy sector and to jointly create new technologies in order to meet the world's increasingly growing energy demand.

Asked how current relations between Russia, the US and the EU could transform, Novak said that the parties needed to stop ''seeing enemies in each other, to stop seeing apparent dirty tricks on the part of our partners in all spheres''. He also proposed to pay attention to foreign business that wanted to work, collaborate and develop joint projects with Russian companies.

Russia's relationship with Saudi Arabia, which has grown beyond the OPEC-non-OPEC agreement in recent months, can serve as an example of a successful collaboration. The two countries are currently working on over 30 joint energy projects. ''We have our agenda, a road map, agriculture, industry, business circles, business, we are working actively together in practically every field''.

''OPEC-non-OPEC meetings could become a regular thing,'' believes Aleksandr Novak. Photo: Lisi Niesner/European Pressphoto Agency

As for the OPEC deal and its possible extension, these discussions haven't taken place, said the minister. According to the OPEC secretariat's estimates, the cuts need to continue until the end of 2018. If a desired market balance is not achieved or in case of force majeure, countries will discuss this question. But even if the market reaches balance by the end of 2018, the parties need to continue their cooperation and meetings in order to discuss the ongoing situation and research issues related to the energy and oil market. So OPEC-non-OPEC meetings could become a regular thing.

Speaking of the possibility that Russia will invest in Saudi Aramco's IPO, Novak said that it depended on Russian companies that would choose to participate. If these companies' specialists find the IPO proposal noteworthy, the companies will announce their interest.

By Anna Litvina

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