Venezuela, Russia to fight falling oil prices: Maduro

22nd January 2016, Comments 0 comments

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said Friday he and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin have agreed to work together to fight falling oil prices that have hit their economies.

"Without doubt we are going to defend the market. We have agreed with President Vladimir Putin to carry on working on a common vision and plan," Maduro told business leaders.

He said he spoke to Putin by phone Friday about "the situation in the oil market."

Venezuela has the world's biggest known crude reserves but the price of oil has slumped over the past year and a half, slashing its revenues.

On Friday, Venezuela's oil price fell to $21.50 a barrel. In mid-2014 in contrast, world prices were over $100 a barrel.

Venezuela has called on fellow members of the OPEC major oil producers' group to hold an extraordinary meeting in February to discuss reining in prices.

Maduro said he would keep pressuring them "until we clear the way for a stabilization and a recovery of the market."

Russia is the world's second biggest crude oil producer after Saudi Arabia, according to the International Energy Agency, but is not a member of OPEC.

An economic crisis sparked by the falling oil price has led to a political crisis in Venezuela.

Socialist leader Maduro is in a standoff with the center-right opposition, which has won control of the legislature.

© 2016 AFP

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