IMF’s Lagarde Says Oil May Stay Low for Longer Than Expected

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Baku, February 23, AZERTAC

Crude prices will probably stay low for longer than expected, International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said, urging Gulf Arab oil-producing countries to cut spending and boost revenue through new taxes, according to Bloomberg.

A value-added tax that’s the same across the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council should be adopted, Lagarde said in a speech in Abu Dhabi. The measure along with corporate income and property taxes would help raise government income, she said.

“Not only have oil prices fallen by around two-thirds from their most recent peak, but supply- and demand-side factors suggest that they are likely to stay low for an extended period,” Lagarde said. That makes it necessary for oil producers to lower reliance on crude for government income, she said.

WTI rose 1.9 percent on Monday to $30.20 a barrel by 11:20 a.m. in Dubai and Brent, benchmark for more than half of the world’s crude, climbed 1.5 percent to $33.49 a barrel.

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