The ministers from the 13-nation Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries on Wednesday came to the decision to keep the crude oil production at the same level as until now, saying that the surging prices were not driven by factors that they could do something about.
During their meeting in Vienna, the representatives of the countries that benefit of the huge price of the oil agreed to keep the output steady, as it was expected, after 10 of the organization’s members, including Iran and Venezuela, previously announced that they would not change the output.
The US crude oil reached a record price at the beginning of this week, as it jumped at 103.95 dollars per barrel and went up and down, but it was still trading above 100 dollars on Wednesday morning.
Despite the calls from US officials to apply even a slight increase on the production, saying that it would positively affect the prices, OPEC ministers refused, repeatedly saying that the weak dollar, speculations and politics have damaged the oil price.
“I think it’s a mistake to have your biggest customer’s economy to slow down … as a result of high energy prices,” US President George W. Bush said on Tuesday.
Given the fact that OPEC ministers are confident that the output is not rising the price of crude, giving as example the last OPEC production increase in 2007, which did not halt the surge, they were again doubtful weather to change the output.
However, Wednesday’s decision is not radically excluding the possibility that OPEC could discreetly raise production.
OPEC, who provides the world with over a third of its needs, might be able to change its decision during the producer- consumer talks that are going to take place in Rome between 20 and 22 April.