Iran's caretaker oil minister said yesterday that the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) was opposed to any increase in output ceilings in the absence of "well-studied justifications."
"Iran's policy as head of Opec is to maintain the production ceiling of this organisation," Mohammad Aliabadi was quoted as saying by the semi-official Mehr news agency. "It is an issue which a majority of Opec members agree with." Iran holds the rotating Opec presidency.
However, an oil industry expert told Gulf News that Opec no longer has an output ceiling.
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"There was no agreement to roll over the existing targets. There's no ceiling and there are no targets," said Kate Dourian, Middle East editor for Platts, a global energy information provider. Dourian said Opec producers with spare capacity such as Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait would step in with more oil if there's demand. "That's what they said that's what they will do in the absence of a collective agreement," said Dourian.
The June 8 meeting of Opec in Vienna failed to secure a consensus on output. Ministers walked out of Opec's failed meeting with Saudi Arabia's oil minister at the time citing "Libya, Angola, Ecuador, Algeria, Iran and Venezuela" as "the six countries who were vehemently against increasing production."