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UAE President Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
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Opec faces longer-term challenges

The organisation may have smoothed over the cracks this time. But the UAE’s very public dissent may be just the first sign of things to come

It was little surprise that Saudi Arabia and the UAE eventually reached a compromise on Opec production and baselines, despite the high drama at the latest Opec ministerial meeting. What was surprising, though, was the public nature of the disagreement and the willingness of UAE officials to joust so vigorously with their Saudi counterparts in international media, leading to energy minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman playing much more a la guerre than a plaisance. Opec has had its fair share of drama over the years. Nevertheless, the fact that the two erstwhile allies who have worked closely on finessing the cartel’s policies for decades and, since 2015, co-ordinated on a range of regional

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