DUBAI (Reuters) - Oil importing countries may announce crude oil purchases to support crude demand which has tumbled as a result of the coronavirus crisis, International Energy Agency Executive Director Fatih Birol told al-Arabiya TV on Thursday.
OPEC and its allies including Russia, a group known as OPEC+, hold a video conference on Thursday on plans for deep output cuts. This is followed on Friday by a call between energy ministers from the Group of 20 (G20) major economies.
"We may hear tomorrow (Friday) countries purchasing crude to build up their strategic (reserves) and support demand," Birol said, according to the al-Arabiya television channel.
"We will see a recovery of demand in line with the resolution of this problem and the return of the global economy, but I don't expect a very quick recovery of oil prices," he said.
Global fuel demand has plunged by as much as 30% as measures to fight the virus have grounded aircraft, reduced vehicle usage and curbed economic activity.
"What will happen tomorrow (Friday) at the G20 summit is very important ... it is not just a problem facing some oil producing states, it is also facing the global economy," Birol said.
(Reporting by Alaa Swilam and Dahlia Nehme, writing by Maher Chmaytelli; Editing by Jane Merriman and Edmund Blair)