Oil prices rise as Saudi Arabia announces continued co-operation of producers
Oil prices rose on Monday after comments from Saudi Arabia and reported that cooperation between oil producers who are cutting production in an effort to boost the market will continue beyond 2018.
Traders said a decline in drilling and drilling for oil in the United States and fighting in Syria between Turkish troops and Kurdish fighters also supported crude oil.
Brent crude futures were $ 68.81 at 0228 GMT, up 20 cents, or 0.3 percent, from the previous close. On January 15, Brent hit its highest level since December 2014 at $ 70.37 a barrel.
Futures for US West Texas Intermediate crude futures were $ 63.55 a barrel, up 18 cents, or 0.3 percent, from the previous closing price.
Saudi Arabia, the world's top oil exporter and OPEC's real leader, said on Sunday there was a consensus among key oil producers that production cooperation should continue after the end of the current supply cut agreement expires at the end of this year.
"There is a willingness to continue cooperation after 2018," Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said in Oman. "The mechanism has not yet been determined, but there is consensus to continue."
A group of top oil producers in OPEC and Russia began cutting production in January last year to boost prices and is due to expire at the end of 2018.
Clashes broke out Sunday between the Turkish army and its opposition allies on the one hand and Kurdish factions on the other, in an escalation of a campaign launched by Turkey two days ago and led to the opening of a new front in the Syrian civil war.
The decline in oil drilling activity in the United States has led to increased support for oil prices.
Baker Hughes Energy Services said on Friday drilling companies cut five oil rigs in the week ending Jan. 19, bringing the total number of rigs to 747.