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By Olga Tanas and Jake Rudnitsky

Russian President Vladimir Putin told the country’s top oil executives that oil producing countries should join together to slash output to reverse the collapse in world oil prices.

Putin said global cuts of a little above or below 10 million barrels a day are possible, according to televised comments Friday. He echoed a Tweet by U.S. President Donald Trump saying Russia and Saudi Arabia were ready to cut output that sent Brent oil prices up as much as 47%.

The Russian reversal reflects alarm at the sudden collapse in demand sparked by the coronavirus pandemic, which threatens a global recession this year. As recently as two weeks ago, Putin appeared to be digging in his heels in a price war with Saudi Arabia that began when Moscow pulled out of a supply-limit agreement with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. That prompted Saudi Arabia to flood the market with oil, driving prices to the lowest in nearly two decades.

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