OPEC chief unconcerned if crude hits $100 a barrel
OPEC's leading oil price hawk Iran joined Venezuela and Libya yesterday to say it saw no need for the cartel to consider raising crude supplies to rein in prices which are nearing $100 (€74) a barrel.
Iranian oil minister Massoud Mirkazemi said some OPEC members saw no need to act even if prices went to $120 a barrel. The comments will be of concern for consumer countries worried that rising commodity costs are igniting inflation and jeopardising economic recovery. "None of the OPEC members find $100 concerning or irrational. Some of the OPEC members see no need for an emergency meeting even with prices at $110 or $120," Mr Mirkazemi, OPEC president for 2011, told a news conference.
As holder of the rotating OPEC presidency, Iran has responsibility for co-ordinating any emergency meeting with OPEC's Vienna-based secretariat.
"None of the members have asked for an emergency meeting and I think for a long time there would be no such request," Mr Mirkazemi added.
Venezuelan oil minister Rafael Ramirez added that $100 was "fair value" for crude, a position that Libya also backs.
Benchmark Brent crude broke $99 a barrel on Friday, a 27-month high, while US oil futures rose to $91.54