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Iran says OPEC needs Russian help on price -report

Russia's ranking as the biggest oil producer in the world had been achieved at the expense of Saudi Arabia, Khatibi said.


November 1, 2010 3:50 by

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries needs the cooperation of Russia to help improve oil market stability and increase low crude prices, Iran’s OPEC governor was quoted as saying on Monday.

The comment reflects concern among some OPEC countries that the impact of their production quotas — aimed at supporting the oil price — is undermined by non-OPEC producers, which do not curb their output in the same way.

“We expect major oil producers, such as Russia, to cooperate with OPEC members in the management of the oil market to restore market stability,” Mohammad Ali Khatibi said, according to the semi-official Mehr news agency.

Although prices have been stable so far this year around the $70-$80 range, “they are not good”, he said. Iran is the world’s fifth-largest oil exporter.

Russia’s ranking as the biggest oil producer in the world had been achieved at the expense of Saudi Arabia, Khatibi said.

“Russia has turned into the greatest oil producer in the world, when Saudi Arabia’s oil production has dropped in compliance with OPEC quota.

Khatibi also reiterated Iran’s stance that Iraq — Iran’s neighbour and historic rival — should return to the OPEC quota system when its output increases. Iraq has been exempt from quotas while its oil industry recovers from years of war.

“If its production attains a sharp increasing trend, then that country should certainly enter OPEC’s quota system,” he said.

The 12-member producer group which met in Vienna last month held its supply target steady since announcing a record output cut of 4.2 million barrels per day in 2008.

(Editing by Jane Baird)


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