Kuwait's Oil Minister Mohammad al-Baseeri said on Tuesday that OPEC will likely keep its official production quotas unchanged as the market is balanced and prices are stable.
"The (oil) market is currently balanced and there is no shortage or excess in supplies which resulted in relatively stable prices that remained above $100 a barrel," Baseeri told the official KUNA news agency in Vienna.
"This balance could probably lead OPEC not to change its current production ceiling," said the minister ahead of an OPEC meeting Wednesday.
He however said that the final decision depends on talks that would be held between OPEC ministers who would also discuss the Eurozone economic crisis, slow US growth, high inflation in China and Libya's rising production.
Baseeri said a sharp drop in supplies would send oil prices soaring, harming the interests of consumers and producers as well, adding that the interests of all parties is to keep crude price balanced and stable.
The Kuwaiti minister has said the emirate has boosted production to above 3.0 million barrels per day in October, way ahead of its official quota of 2.22 million bpd.
Analysts widely expect OPEC, which supplies a third of the world's crude, to maintain its official output quota of 24.84 million barrels per day -- where it has stood for almost three years.
The Middle East Economic Survey (MEES) said in its last edition that OPEC members excluding Iraq produced almost 28.0 million bpd in November, the highest level in three years.
Crude prices were mixed in Asia Tuesday on worries over Eurozone debt crisis with New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in January, was up nine cents to $97.86 a barrel in the afternoon.
Brent North Sea crude for January delivery shed four cents to $107.22.