Putin did not propose extending oil output cut deal


"The leaders will consider joint steps to further develop bilateral cooperation in the trade, economic, investment and cultural-humanitarian areas", revealed the Kremlin, according to CNBC, which noted that "in addition, worldwide issues including conflicts in the Middle East are expected to form part of the discussions between Putin and the Saudi ruler". Two entire luxury hotels, i.e. the Ritz Carlton and the Four Seasons, have been booked for visit.

The Russian president also said he was confident the visit by Salman would give a fresh impetus to the development of bilateral ties with Riyadh.

Putin described his talk with the Saudi king as very productive, according to comments carried by state media.

But OPEC - led by Saudi Arabia, which holds the world's largest oil reserves - and Russian Federation, a non-OPEC member which nonetheless is a major oil producer, recently reached a broad agreement on production cuts across OPEC and non-OPEC states created to push prices back up.

The Saudi energy minister has said his country is open to all options. The previous time he was in Moscow in 2006 as the governor of the Riyadh Region.

Saudi Arabia has made no firm pledge to extend the deal, but Falih said his country was "flexible" regarding Moscow's suggestion.

Before the visit, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov described the event as "an historical moment".

By contrast, Saudi Arabia has been supporting the rebel groups seeking to topple Assad.

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"The Saudis want help on Iran, and Russia wants trade and investment", said Mark N. Katz, a Russia-Middle East relations analyst at George Mason University.

King Salman called Russian Federation a "friendly" country and told Putin that their talks will boost the global economy as well as help create worldwide stability and security. Moscow has also headed to Saudi Arabia after China and Qatar to meet its investment needs.

Saudi Arabia has agreed to invest $1bn in Russian energy projects, while Russian petrochemicals giant Sibur will build a plant in Saudi Arabia in a separate $1.1bn agreement.

The two countries also signed a deal to set up a $1 billion joint investment fund. US light crude was up 10 cents at $50.08.

The visit of 100 business man is planned to make 25 agreements in different areas, while King Salman is expected to sign a $3.5 billion weapons purchase agreement.

Saudi-U.S. ties grew strained under the Obama administration over its backing of a nuclear agreement with Iran and its cautious stance on the Syrian conflict.

King Salman and President Putin on Thursday signed a slew of arms and energy deals as the key USA ally seeks to deepen cooperation with Moscow. "The political will of Moscow and Riyadh for deeper cooperation on the widest range of issues is clear".

"That said, it's clear that Russian Federation has been able to play a weak hand very well and step into vacuums everywhere where the US has treated", he said.