December 5, 2017 / 2:25 PM / 2 years ago

Indonesia to keep OPEC membership frozen: deputy energy minister

JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesia will keep a freeze on its membership of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), deputy energy minister Arcandra Tahar said on Tuesday, following “directions” from the country’s President.

Indonesia’s OPEC membership was suspended in December 2016, less than a year after it rejoined the cartel, when the net oil importer could not agree to production cuts.

“There are several reasons, but what is clear the decision was we will keep the (membership) freeze,” Tahar told reporters, declining to comment further.

President Joko Widodo had decided on the matter “several months ago” and OPEC had been informed, he added.

Earlier this year the energy ministry said it was seeking to reactivate Indonesia’s OPEC membership, but would only do so if it was not subject to oil output cuts.

Indonesia pumps about 800,000 barrels of crude per day.

OPEC and non-OPEC producers led by Russia agreed last week to extend oil output cuts until the end of 2018 as they try to finish clearing a global glut of crude.

Reporting by Wilda Asmarini; writing by Fergus Jensen; editing by Alexander Smith

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