Zanganeh Reaffirms Oil Policy

Zanganeh  Reaffirms  Oil Policy Zanganeh  Reaffirms  Oil Policy

Iran will firmly maintain its stance on the recent developments in the global oil market and will not cut production, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said Sunday on the sidelines of a national conference on economy in Tehran.

“Iran's production plummeted from 2.5 million barrels per day (bpd) to less than a million bpd, notwithstanding, we have not changed our position," he said, adding: “No matter how much the prices decline, Iran will strongly keep its stance in this regard.”

“Any member state with higher production rate can further influence decisions at the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), although many imagine that other members' production levels have no impact on decision-makings within the organization,” Zanganeh told reporters.

“Regarding OPEC decision-making process, there are two important considerations: one is the consensus of the member states, and the other is a lack of enforceability,” he was quoted by Shana news agency as saying.

Referring to the OPEC's recent ministerial meeting, Zanganeh said: “Prior to the meeting, OPEC members said they won't cut their production. We knew that oil prices will further decline after the meeting, but it was not an emergency meeting, and thus we could not take any action in that regard."

"In fact, eight countries were seeking a 1.5-mb/d cut in production and four others favored the maintenance of OPEC production ceiling at 30 mb/d,” he said.

“Prices are unpredictable, particularly because political factors and intentions affect the prices,” the Iranian official said.

Asked how long he thinks the global oil prices will keep falling, the minister said: “The trend will continue until unbalanced supply and demand system in the economic sector and negative political intentions are removed.”

Zanganeh had earlier said that a conspiracy is behind the ongoing oil plunge.

Earlier Sunday, Zanganeh briefed Iranian parliamentarians on the developments in international oil market. The minister outlined the current situation of the world oil market for the parliament members during an hour-long closed door session. He provided an overview of fluctuating prices in the international oil markets and exchanged opinion with the lawmakers on the issue. OPEC,  pumping out one-third of the world's oil, decided during its 166th meeting that it will not change production levels, leaving the daily output ceiling at 30 million bpd despite oversupply concerns and the falling oil prices.

The global price of oil had been relatively stable for nearly four years, averaging $110 per barrel. Increased production in the US, Canada, Iraq and elsewhere have made up for the declining supplies by nations such as Iran and Libya, and helped meet the rising global demand. Brent has fallen nearly 45 percent since late June to a 5-1/2 year low due to rising production and slowing global demand.