OPEC President, Iran, intends to call for an unchanged crude oil output by the world oil cartel at the next meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries in Vienna on December 14."Iran will call for retaining the current production ceiling at the next OPEC meeting in order to preserve a fair oil price," the oil ministry's website Shana quoted Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Ghassemi as saying. "Iran, as OPEC president, will support maintaining the production ceiling at the next meeting," he said, adding, "If the current production ceiling is retained, the oil price, which is fair, will not change." Ghassemi said Iran supported "retaining the production ceiling and complying with quotas because this is in the interest of both consumers and producers". OPEC's most recent meeting, on June 8, failed to reach agreement on production levels for the second half of this year.The previous output target of 24.845 million b/d, which covered 11 members but not quota-exempt Iraq, came into force in January 2009 when OPEC was trying to slash production in response to plunging oil prices and a deepening global recession. OPEC production has climbed steadily this year alongside rising oil prices and the loss of Libyan oil supply due to the outbreak of civil war there, and is independently estimated to be above 30 million b/d. The benchmark front-month ICE Brent crude contract, which traded at a two-and-a-half-year high of $127.02/barrel in April, slipped below $100/b earlier Tuesday. OPEC price doves, the Persian Gulf Arab states, have recently joined Iran's view that the worsening economic prospects in the West, specially in the US, require stabilized production at the present levels. Earlier this week, Iran's OPEC Governor Mohammad Ali Khatibi said members of the cartel are narrowing down their differences over production ceiling, given the deteriorating economic conditions in the advanced countries. "We do not accept that a gap exists in the OPEC since different views have always existed in the OPEC," Khatibi told FNA Saturday, dismissing media reports on the widening of rifts among the OPEC members in their latest meeting. Western media alleged that during the last OPEC meeting certain members like Saudi Arabia and Kuwait demanded an increase in the quota of the world oil cartel. He said that during that meeting, certain members were optimistic about the future of the world economy and wanted a hike in the production ceiling due to a forecasted increase in demand, but a majority of others held an opposite view. "But Saudi and Kuwaiti oil ministers never said that they did not accept or would act in opposition to the OPEC decision," the Iranian governor reiterated. Khatibi further stated now that the prospects of the US and western economies have become a source of concern for all parties, "I don't imagine that any difference exists in the members' views about the global economy and all parties are coming to the conclusion that the world economy, specially the advanced countries, are faced with serious problems". Earlier this month, Khatibi had touched on the deteriorating economic conditions in the West, and said that no major change in oil prices was perceived for winter due to the ongoing global economic recession. "Due to the existing economic crisis, it is predicted that this year no significant changes happen in the oil price by the onset of the cold season," Khatibi said. He further explained that there were indications that lingering financial crisis in some western countries would lead to a drop in oil demand. "The drop in demand in recent weeks has been to the extent that some non-OPEC producing countries were compelled to lower their output in proportion to the drop in demand," Khatibi said.