21 May 2007 - 15:18
  • News Code: 105198

OPEC would be pleased to see oil prices remain at around $65 a barrel and would be unlikely to consider output cuts unless prices fell below $50.

The group"s secretary general Abdullah al-Badri told Reuters on Thursday that his comments may disappoint consumer nations who would like the cartel to pump more crude ahead of the summer, but will also provide some hope that the group might not rush to make a third production cut should prices fall back sharply.


Asked if an oil price of $60-$65 was fine, Badri said: "I think I would agree with that. I don"t want to see a low price and I don"t want to see a high price."


OPEC"s crude oil price basket dipped below $50 a barrel briefly in January but has remained resolutely above $60 since late March.


Badri declined to say at what price level OPEC would increase output, but did give a rare indication of the floor price that could cause the cartel to tighten its taps.


"If the prices were at $50 or below for a long period, that would trigger the ministers to do something," he said, when asked what kind of a price level would provoke a further cut in production.


Earlier this month top exporter, Saudi Arabia signaled that it might not have to boost potential output above its targeted 12.5 million barrels per day (bpd) capacity if consumers succeed in reducing their reliance on oil.



News Code 105198

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