‘Oil output hike is not a solution’
Agence France Presse
Beirut, May 31:
Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) could lift oil production by up to three million barrels per day (bpd) but this could only bring down soaring oil prices in the short-term, an Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries official said. “Almost immediately, three OPEC countries can produce up to three million barrels more. They are Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the UAE,” Omar Ibrahim, head of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) information department, said.
“But its effect will probably not last longer than 48 hours as supply and demand are not really the problem,” he said. “For a permanent solution, we will have to look beyond supply and demand, we have to look at geopolitics and the US markets,” Ibrahim added. Ibrahim said the 11-member OPEC was “concerned about global security and stability and we are especially concerned about security in our member countries, including Saudi Arabia and Iraq.”
OPEC’s current output ceiling is 23.5 million bpd, but its actual production is estimated at 25.5-26 million, with most members already pumping at their maximum. But despite such supply levels, oil prices have been on the rise for months, putting OPEC under heavy pressure from consuming countries to boost output and raising sharply the profile of the Beirut ministerial meeting.