Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on Dec. 28 he expected there would be 5 million to 6 million bbl/d in next-year additional oil demand, which has not fully recovered from the pandemic.

"We expect around 5-6 million barrels per day in additional demand growth for next year. This is an optimistic scenario," Novak told Rossiya-24 TV channel.

He said that global oil demand is still up to 8 million bbl/d below the pre-pandemic levels, when it normally was around 100 million bbl/d.

Russia, other leading oil producers, including OPEC, agreed to curb their oil production in order to stabilize a global oil market weighed down by the pandemic and sluggish growth.

The group, known as OPEC+, has started to lift output as demand has recovered. It is due to increase its combined output by 500,000 bbl/d from Jan. 1.

The OPEC+ deal expires after April 2022. Novak said that if global oil demand recovers faster than expected, the time frame of the agreement could be adjusted.

"But on the whole we will continue this joint work with partners from different countries, as we believe this brings benefits for our countries," he said.