The OPEC oil deal: The future of the oil industry

THE ECONOMIST đź”’| Oil, it has been said, is the blood coursing through the veins of the world economy. In 2020 the economy is bleeding red. As covid-19 keeps workers at home and planes on the ground, demand for oil has fallen faster and further than at any point in its history. Amplifying the shock, a furious row between Saudi Arabia and Russia set off a price war in early March. Last month oil prices fell by more than half, leaving a giant industry reeling.

On April 12th the world’s energy superpowers broke bread and reached a new deal to try to prop up prices. The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (opec) and its allies, including Russia, said they would slash production by 9.7m barrels a day from May to the end of June, a record, and restrain output for two years.

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