Russia may create an oil reserve to influence global prices, Russia`s top energy official said on Wednesday as OPEC`s Secretary General Abdullah al-Badri was due to have a first meeting with President Dmitry Medvedev, according to Reuters.
"The ministry of energy is considering creating an oil production reserve, which would allow it to work more efficiently with prices on the market," Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin told reporters.
When asked how big the reserve should be, he said: "Enough to reach efficient pricing parameters."
Al-Badri, who came to Moscow on Tuesday, said he would meet Medvedev to discuss the exchange of market data and will not raise the issue of oil production cuts.
Russia is the biggest oil producer outside OPEC and the world`s second largest exporter after Saudi Arabia.
"I will meet the president this afternoon. I will not ask Russia for a cut ... But I will ask for data on markets," al-Badri said ahead of the first ever meeting between OPEC and the head of the Russian state.
Other top OPEC officials have called on Russia this week to join OPEC in cutting production. The organization will hold an extraordinary meeting on Friday and is widely expected to reduce its deliveries to global markets.
Moscow agreed to reduce exports several times earlier this decade in tandem with OPEC, but market watchers then said the pledge never materialized as private companies raised shipments instead.
Russia has long toyed with the idea of an oil reserve, which could allow it to become a swing producer.
But the expensive and logistically-difficult plan was never implemented as the government and private companies failed to reach a compromise.
The current oil production scheme in Russia does not allow the country to change its flows significantly.