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(Business Insider) A year ago, Saudi Oil Minister Ali Naimi made it plain that he didn’t care what happened to Russia if oil-producing countries failed to cooperate with Saudi-dominated OPEC on keeping prices high by restricting production.

” We want to tell the world that high efficiency producing countries are the ones that deserve market share ,” he said, before singling out Russia’s West Siberia as a region that wasn’t very good at producing competitively priced oil.

Since then Russia’s oil-dependent economy has been decimated as the price of oil has plummeted. Here is the chart of the Russian economy from OPEC’s most recent report on the state of the global oil market : Note that Russian GDP was growing until this time last year, when the Saudis signalled that they were going to pump Russia into oblivion.

All year, oil-producing countries have been in a mad race to the bottom. Russia and the US (and a bunch of other countries) refuse to cooperate with OPEC to keep prices high, so Saudi Arabia and OPEC have been furiously pumping cheap, competitively priced oil.

The increased supply has driven down prices. Oil started the year near $55 a barrel and is now nearer $35, as this […]