Ecuador’s decision to leave OPEC, where it has been a member since 1973, came as a surprise to the organization, OPEC Secretary General Mohammed Barkindo said in an interview with TASS during the Russian Energy Week.
"I was surprised when I received the correspondence from Quito because Ecuador has always been a very strong and valuable member of the organization. I had the honor of visiting climate two years ago and meeting with the new leadership who expressed their continuous support to OPEC. It was therefore a surprise to me and I believe to others," he said.
The Ministry of Energy and Non-renewable Resources of Ecuador on October 1 announced that the country would quit the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on January 1, 2020. The ministry noted that the decision was related to the need to achieve "financial stability."
Ecuador joined OPEC in 1973, in 1992 the country suspended its membership in the organization, renewing it in 2007. Ecuador’s oil reserves are estimated at 8.3 bln barrels of oil. Oil production in 2018 was at 517,000 barrels per day.