Trump says he expects Saudi-Russia oil production deal in coming days

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks as U.S. Defense Secretary Mark?Esper listens during the coronavirus daily briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S., April 1, 2020. REUTERS/Tom Brenner

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he expected Saudi Arabia and Russia to reach a deal in the next few days on oil production to end a price war that has “ravaged” the oil industry worldwide.

“I think that they will work it out over the next few days. ... Both know what they have to do,” Trump told a White House news conference, without elaborating on the reasons for his confidence.

“Worldwide, the oil industry has been ravaged,” Trump said, pointing to a flooded oil market as the fight for market share between Saudi Arabia and Russia has sent prices to 18-year lows.

Trump said he wanted to bring the oil industry “back to where it was.”

“I think I know what to do to solve it. We don’t want to lose our great oil companies … I’d rather not do that,” the president said without elaborating.

“I think that Russia and Saudi Arabia at some point are going to make a deal, in the not-too-distant future, because it’s very bad for Russia, it’s very bad for Saudi Arabia,” he said, adding he had separate “great” conversations

with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Russian President Vladimir Putin in recent days.

Reporting by Jeff Mason; Writing by Mohammad Zargham; Editing by Sandra Maler and Peter Cooney