Reuters: No OPEC countries have requested an emergency meeting to discuss the rising price of crude, Iran’s oil minister said on Sunday, calling $100 per barrel a “real” price and not a matter of concern for producers.
By Ramin Mostafavi
TEHRAN, Jan 16 (Reuters) – No OPEC countries have requested an emergency meeting to discuss the rising price of crude, Iran’s oil minister said on Sunday, calling $100 per barrel a “real” price and not a matter of concern for producers.
“The price of $100 for oil per barrel is real … OPEC does not need to hold an emergency meeting over the price issue,” Massoud Mirkazemi told a news conference.
Brent crude prices rose this week to around $98 a barrel, while U.S. oil futures were at about $91, well above the $70 to $80 range that OPEC’s top exporter Saudi Arabia says is comfortable for both producers and consumers.
One delegate from a Gulf OPEC member state told Reuters on Thursday OPEC could hold an emergency meeting if oil prices “exceed $100 and stay there”.
Libya, Ecuador and Venezuela have all said prices need to be higher to help producing nations maintain output.
“None of the OPEC members find $100 concerning or irrational. Some of the OPEC members see no need for an emergency meeting even with prices at $110 or $120,” Mirkazemi said.
Iran holds the rotating OPEC presidency. The next scheduled OPEC meeting is on June 2.
“None of the members have asked for an emergency meeting and I think for a long time there would be no such request,” Mirkazemi said.
Analysts are divided between those who see fundamental strength, as the world economy recovers, driving up fuel consumption, and those who focus on differences between today’s relatively well-supplied market and that of 2008, when oil prices raced to an all-time high of nearly $150 a barrel. (Editing by David Holmes)