Putin and UAE President MBZ talk about Ukraine and OPEC+

Putin and UAE President MBZ talk about Ukraine and OPEC+
FILE PHOTO: United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan walks to meet with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis(not seen) at the Maximos Mansion in Athens, Greece, August 25, 2022. REUTERS/Louiza Vradi

Last week, OPEC+, a group of oil producers including the UAE and Russia, agreed to cut oil production by two million barrels a day. This is its biggest cut since 2020, and the US is totally against the move. Apart from both being OPEC+ members, the UAE and Russia have friendly relations with common economic interests and a strategic partnership. And the UAE has refused to join in Western sanctions against Russia after the invasion of Ukraine.

On Tuesday, UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed al-Nahyan (known as MBZ) traveled to Russia to sit down with President Putin. During the meeting, Putin mentioned the oil cuts, praising them as a way to help the global energy market. He also said that the UAE could play a role in resolving the war with Ukraine. MBZ says they spoke on “the importance of engaging in dialogue to reduce tensions and arrive at a diplomatic solution.”

Key comments:

“Our decisions … aren’t directed against anyone,” Russian President Putin said, referring to the OPEC+ decision to cut oil production. “Our actions are aimed at ensuring stability in global energy markets to make both consumers of energy resources and those who deal with production and supplies feel calm, stability and confidence, to help balance supply and demand.”

“I am aware of your concerns about how the situation is developing in general and of your wish to help with resolving all controversial issues, including the crisis that’s happening now. I’d like to point out that it’s indeed a substantial factor that allows us to use your influence for moving toward resolving the situation,” Putin said to MBZ at the start of their meeting.