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Global Markets: Alberta eases oil production restrictions

By Commodity News Services Canada

WINNIPEG, Jan. 31 (CNS Canada) – The following is a glance at the news moving markets in Canada and globally.

– With the price differential between Western Canadian Select crude oil and the benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude oil at less than US$9 per barrel, the Province of Alberta announced it will ease restrictions on oil production. The differential doesn’t cover the cost of transporting WCS by rail to refineries in the United States. The Alberta government will allow production to climb slightly from 3.56 million barrels of crude oil a day to 3.63 million barrels a day. As well, Alberta’s crude oil inventories have dropped by 5 million barrels since the province’s production cuts took effect on Jan. 1.

– Before the U.S. and China agree to end their trade war, U.S. President Donald Trump said he wants to meet with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping. High-level trade talks between the two countries wrap up on Thursday and progress has been made towards soon ending their trade war, according to media reports. No date has been set for a Trump-Xi meeting.

– With 33 days left before the United Kingdom is scheduled to pull out of the European Union, and with the Brexit deal in tatters, U.K. Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said on Thursday his country may need more time. The key stumbling block to a new Brexit deal is the Irish backstop, in which the U.K. could still access the EU’s single market through the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland. U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May is meeting with EU President Donald Tusk and Irish Taoiseach (prime minister) Leo Varadkar on the matter.

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