Why a US backlash over Saudi oil cuts failed to materialise

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Saudi Arabia’s energy partnership with Russia, which leads OPEC+ together with Riyadh, is important to the health of the Kingdom’s economy. But Riyadh and Moscow’s relationship in this domain is about much more than economics. It’s also about Saudi Arabia’s geopolitical independence. Energy cooperation with Moscow factors into Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman (MbS)’s message to Washington that the Saudis will pursue their own interests on the international stage without taking orders from the West. “After OPEC+ announced steep production cuts in early October 2022, tensions …

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