Riyadh, April 6 (IANS) Global oil prices remain on edge after Saudi Arabia and Russia postponed a meeting scheduled to be held on Monday about a deal to cut output as the coronavirus pandemic hits demand, it was reported.
Saudi Arabia and Russia, currently locked in an oil price war, were scheduled to meet on Monday, but the meeting has now been pushed back to Thursday, the BBC reported.
At the start of Asian trade on Monday, the global benchmark Brent crude fell 12 per cent, but recovered some of this ground. US-traded oil, known as West Texas Intermediate, dropped more than 10 per cent before stabilising to sit 3.5 per cent lower.
Prices were expected to remain volatile until the meeting between the two countries take place, said the BBC report.
Measures in countries across the world to slow the spread of the coronavirus, including the US, UK and much of mainland Europe and Asia, have seen global energy demand fall sharply.
At the same time the month-long oil price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia has left the global market with far more crude than is needed.
The price war came after a deal between the two countries to cut production, in response to the drop in demand, collapsed last month.
That has pushed down prices to lows not seen for almost two decades as traders wait for a new deal to be agreed.
US oil fell by two thirds in the first three months of the year, as it saw its worst quarter on record, the BBC reported.
The huge impact on the American energy sector has prompted Washington to attempt to broker an agreement between Saudi Arabia and Russia.
On April 2, oil prices rose by more than 20%, the biggest one-day leap on record, on signs that an end was in sight for the dispute.