Russian efforts, which included negotiating with Mexico, were vital to OPEC+ countries signing a new crude oil output cut deal, the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) Kirill Dmitriev said on Monday.

“Russia absolutely played a key role in the conclusion of this deal. The Russian president personally conducted many telephone conversations. In fact, there were more telephone conversations with the United States and several other countries over the past week than there were in the entirety of last year,” Dmitriev said during an appearance on the Channel One broadcaster.

The RDIF head said that Russian efforts were central to reaching a compromise among the 23 OPEC+ oil-producing nations. He stated that the deal will lead to a stabilization of financial markets and the strengthening of Russia’s economic position.

Earlier in the day, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak emphasized President Vladimir Putin’s role in reaching an agreement among the OPEC+ states.

On Sunday, OPEC+ signed a landmark deal that commits member nations to reduce crude oil production by 9.7 million barrels per day from May-June. Thereafter, production will be cut by 7.7 million barrels per day until the end of 2020, and by 5.8 million barrels daily from January 2021 until April 2022.

Mexico had earlier rejected the planned agreement, as Energy Minister Rocio Nahle committed to cutting oil by 100,000 barrels daily, rather than the 400,000 barrels per day as stipulated in the deal.

Azerbaijani Energy Ministry spokeswoman Zamina Aliyeva told Sputnik on Sunday that the deal was concluded after the United States committed to reducing output by a further 300,000 barrels per day.

Russian Oil Companies Support Production Cuts Agreed by OPEC+ - Energy Minister

At a meeting with the Russian Energy Ministry on Monday, the country's oil companies supported a reduction in oil production under the OPEC+ agreement, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said.

"Today, a meeting with heads of oil companies was held in a video conference mode. We discussed the current situation on the market, as well as those decisions that were made as part of the OPEC+ agreement. The heads of the companies confirmed and supported the parameters of the agreement. They also believe that it is necessary to take radical measures today to balance the market", the minister told the Rossiya 1 broadcaster.

Russian President Vladimir Putin played a key role in the OPEC+ deal, and it could not have been agreed without him, Novak said.

"Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin certainly played a key role in reaching an agreement between the OPEC+ countries. We saw a number of disagreements. In recent days, the president has contacted the US President and the Saudi King on several occasions. These have been constant detailed negotiations. The deal could not have taken place without the president’s participation", he said.

The total reduction in global oil production from May to June may amount to 15-20 million barrels per day, the minister said.

He stressed that the United States, Norway and several other oil-producing countries also announced their intentions to reduce output. 

OPEC+ countries, as well as oil producers from the wider G20 group of nations such as the United States, Brazil and Canada, reached a new agreement on Sunday to reduce oil production by 9.7 million barrels a day for two months within the OPEC+ group starting from 1 May, and possibly up to 15 million barrels of oil per day with G20 nations taken into account.

OPEC+ Deal Could Prompt Oil Price Rise to $45 Per Barrel By Year’s End – Gazprom Neft CEO

The OPEC+ deal will not prompt an immediate sharp rise in oil prices, but should the international community manage to curb the COVID-19 outbreak, it is possible that prices could rise to between $40 and $45 a barrel, Russia’s Gazprom Neft CEO Alexander Dyukov said.

“Of course, one should not expect a sharp increase in prices given the results of the deal. We continue to believe that the second quarter of 2020 will be the most difficult, but we hope that the removal of lockdown measures and the resumption of trade will take place in the summer, meaning that oil can reach its pre-crisis price by fall”, Dyukov stated in an interview with the Kommersant newspaper.

The Gazprom Neft CEO added that oil prices could reach $45 per barrel by the end of the year and expressed a positive outlook for the future.

“In such an optimistic scenario, the price could reach between $40 and $45 per barrel by the end of the year, with further growth in 2021”, he said.

According to the CEO, the OPEC+ deal is not set in stone and allows for adjustments depending on current market conditions. He said that Gazprom Neft is prepared for all market eventualities.

On Sunday, OPEC+ signed a landmark deal that commits member nations to reduce crude oil production by 9.7 million barrels per day in May and June. Thereafter, production will be cut by 7.7 million barrels per day until the end of 2020, and by 5.8 million barrels daily from January 2021 until April 2022.

Brent crude oil futures closed at $31.74 per barrel on Monday.