A senior Iranian legislator underlined the country's long-term membership in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, and said Iran has a high chance for winning the post of OPEC secretary-general.
"Iran is among those countries which have had an effective presence in OPEC since the very first day of its inauguration and it has higher skills and experiences compared to the other members of the Organization," member of the parliament's Energy Commission Hossein Amiri Khamkani said Saturday.
"Although there is a tight competition between Iran and Iraq for the post of OPEC secretary-general, it seems that Iran has a better chance for winning the valuable post," he added.
In relevant remarks in April, Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Qassemi announced Iran and Iraq are in tight rivalry over the post of the Secretary General of the OPEC after speculations about Saudi Arabia's retreat.
Qassemi underlined Iran's resolve to introduce a candidate, possibly Former Oil Minister Gholam Hossein Nozari, for the OPEC Secretary-General post, and said the country is having strenuous consultations with other members of the oil cartel in a bid to increase Nozari's chance.
Iran and Iraq have both nominated former oil ministers, Gholam Hossein Nozari and Thamer Ghadban for the post.
Iran has always been a price hawk, seeking to keep prices as high as the market will entertain, while the Saudis and the other Arab monarchies in the Persian Gulf have generally sought to lower prices to support the western powers that are their main customers.
The recovery of Iraq's badly rundown oil industry since Saddam's downfall has thrust it back into the major producers' league and it needs high prices to generate the funds for its post-Saddam reconstruction.
So it has moved from its alignment with Saudi Arabia to stand alongside Iran within OPEC, adding significant weight to the price hawks.