On 23 January, Saudi ambassador to the US, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, told a US conference of mayors that Riyadh would be willing to raise production further to bring prices down. OPEC officials said that his statements did not reflect the organisation’s policy. On 14 January, OPEC agreed to raise production quotas by a total of 1.5 million b/d, entailing a de facto production cut of 1.7 million b/d. Saudi Arabia’s quota rose to 7.963 million b/d but is expected to pump 8.5 million-9 million b/d over the coming weeks. Riyadh fears that high prices will slow global growth and reduce demand for oil. ‘When our American friends catch cold, we catch pneumonia in our part of the world,’ said Prince Bandar.