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Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a meeting of the Russian Chamber of Commerce in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, March 1, 2016. (Alexei Nikolsky/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a meeting of the Russian Chamber of Commerce in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, March 1, 2016. (Alexei Nikolsky/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

Russia’s Putin says global deal to cap oil output is close

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin says the country is close to an international deal to cap oil output and that any agreement will have the backing of Russia’s oil sector.

Saudi Arabia, Russia, Venezuela and Qatar floated a production cap last month, but it was conditional on other producers joining in.

Addressing top state and private sector oil executives, Putin said Energy Minister Alexander Novak “is agreeing and practically has agreed with his partners in the global market” to cap oil output, in comments reported by state news agency Tass.

Putin told the oil executives that “as the minister has reported, you are all in agreement with this proposal.”

The Russian economy is in recession after being hit hard by the low price of oil, which has also hammered government revenue.

In related news, Russia, Saudis tentatively offer to freeze oil production levels.

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