Russia may have beaten Saudi Arabia during its first match at the World Cup, but the two countries seem intent on working more closely together on the world stage. This week, the members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and Russia are meeting in Vienna to discuss oil policy. In the past 1,5 years, Saudi Arabia and Russia led the OPEC to decrease oil output with the aim of increasing oil prices. With effect: a barrel of Brent crude increased to nearly 80 U.S. dollars in May 2018.
Currently, the Saudis and Russians seem to agree that oil production should "gradually" increase again. This because the OPEC faces several difficult issues. Among these are a new round of U.S. oil sanctions on Iran, a collapse in oil production in Venezuela and the forced closure of oil ports in Libya due to renewed violence in the region. Additionally, U.S. President Donald Trump complained on Twitter that "oil prices are too high" and "OPEC is at it again". As of yet, however, it is not yet clear how much the output would increase and over what period.