OPEC head to meet U.S. shale oil producers for dinner next week

By Javier Blas and Grant Smith on 2/27/2018
HOUSTON and LONDON (Bloomberg) -- The head of OPEC plans to dine with U.S. shale company executives on Monday in Houston, the second consecutive year that the secretary general has met with some of the cartel’s top rivals.

"One of the lessons learned from this oil-price cycle is that as producers we are all in the same boat,"  Mohammad Barkindo said in an interview Tuesday.

The dinner, scheduled to take place as thousands of oil and gas executives, traders, bankers and investors gather for the CERAWeek conference in Houston, comes as U.S. oil production surges past 10 MMbpd due to booming shale output.

Barkindo dined with about two dozens U.S. shale executives on the sidelines of last year’s CERAWeek conference, including Scott Sheffield of Pioneer Natural Resources Co., John Hess of Hess Corp., Doug Lawler of Chesapeake Energy Corp. and Tim Leach of Concho Resources Inc.

"It’s a fulfillment of our common desire to continue the dialogue as agreed last year on the sidelines of CERAWeek," the OPEC boss said.

For the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Nations, U.S. shale producers are a new source of competition, able to respond faster to price signals than traditional suppliers. The unusual 2017 dinner gathering opened a communication channel between the shale companies and OPEC countries.

The meeting between Barkindo and U.S. shale producers was reported earlier by Reuters.

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