OPEC expected to maintain quota

May 26, 1997 02:00 AM

May 8, 1997 OPEC President Libyan Oil Minister Abdullah Salem al-Badri said recently he expected the group to stick with its 25.03 million bpd output ceiling when OPEC meets in Vienna in June. He said the quota would be maintained for another six months until end-1997 despite widespread quota busting which has carried output over 2 million bpd above official allocations. "In June we will stay with the same production quotas until our next meeting in November. Demand is not strong enough (to raise quotas)," he told.
Badri said a ministerial quota compliance meeting in Isfahan had confirmed OPEC output was running in excess of the official ceiling. He said prices could suffer further if member countries did not respect individual output allocations. He confirmed he had contacted other ministers to express his concern at the degree of quota violation. "We are overproducing, yes, but I have contacted everyone and I hope we will have co-operation."
Seven OPEC ministers had talks in Isfahan to discuss quota violations which have helped knock $ 7 a barrel off oil prices since the turn of the year. Iranian Oil Minister Gholamreza Aghazadeh will chair the extended quota compliance discussions. Ministers from Venezuela, Kuwait, Nigeria, Indonesia and Qatar plus OPEC Secretary-General Rilwanu Lukman will also attend. Badri said he planned to travel to other OPEC member countries Saudi Arabia, Algeria and the UAE ahead of OPEC's June 25 conference in Vienna.OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia was not represented in Isfahan.

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