by Tim Wallace
Oil prices could fall again as big exporting nations struggled to agree a plan to freeze production, despite holding crisis talks over the weekend to search for a way to push up prices.
Prices have fallen precipitously over the past two years as a fall in demand combined with a big rise in production from sources such as shale flooded the market with oil.
Ministers from OPEC countries including Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Venezuela plus other major oil producers such as Russia met in Doha to discuss a plan to limit production and protect their profits.
But Iran decided to stay away from the meeting as it does not want to cap its own production, in a move which could limit the effectiveness of any plan struck by the other nations – and which has raised tensions with Saudi Arabia.