Iran General NewsOPEC may raise output, Iran against it

OPEC may raise output, Iran against it

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Reuters: OPEC oil producers may opt to raise output when they meet next week due to rising political pressure, although Iran will lobby the cartel to trim oversupply instead, the country’s OPEC governor told a newspaper. Bucking the trend of members looking to leave production unchanged on June 15, Hossein Kazempour Ardebili said it wanted the group to pull production back to official quota levels. Reuters

TEHRAN – OPEC oil producers may opt to raise output when they meet next week due to rising political pressure, although Iran will lobby the cartel to trim oversupply instead, the country’s OPEC governor told a newspaper.

Bucking the trend of members looking to leave production unchanged on June 15, Hossein Kazempour Ardebili said it wanted the group to pull production back to official quota levels.

“It is possible those who control OPEC’s oversupply may request a 1 million-bpd production increase, but members would agree to increase production by 500,000 bpd,” he told the Sharq daily in an interview.

“This request is partly based on political issues rather than economic ones.”

The European Commission said on Friday it would ask OPEC to raise production later this week to ensure the security of supplies. Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest exporter, is the only country with significant volumes of spare capacity.

But Iran, typically hawkish about prices, “will ask OPEC members to go back to OPEC’s ratified quotas,” Kazempour said.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) pumped nearly 30 million barrels per day (bpd) in May, putting its 10 members with quotas nearly 500,000 bpd above their official limit of 27.5 million bpd.

Kuwait and Indonesia have said they favor letting production roll over at the next meeting. Venezuela has said OPEC could either take no action or cut production.

Kazempour told the newspaper that prices could slip back into a $40-$50 range during the winter. Indonesia’s oil minister said at the weekend that there was little hope of prices easing below $50 a barrel in the near future.

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