16 May 2007 - 13:38
  • News Code: 104833

It is unclear how a proposed gas cartel will work in current complex market conditions, the head of the Paris-based International Energy Agency said.

"As compared with the oil market, the gas market is functioning much more complicatedly due to long-term export contracts," IEA Executive Director Claude Mandil said Thursday. "Therefore it is not clear how a gas cartel will function, if created." The comments were reported by the Itar-Tass news agency.

 

In April, leading gas producers -- including Russia, Iran and Venezuela -- met in Qatar and set up a group called the Gas Exporting Countries Forum, which Russia leads. They denied the group was a cartel similar to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

 

But Western leaders said they feared the group could be just such a cartel that controls prices. At the time, U.S. Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said the group would lead to "problems" for producing and consuming nations. Mandil said Thursday, however, he would support any action that makes the gas market more transparent.

 

PIN/UPI

News Code 104833

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