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Iran: Crude oil ought to be US$150
DUBAI—Crude oil should be at least US$150 per barrel, Iran’s oil minister was quoted as saying yesterday, and the sanctions-hit country’s Organisationof Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) governor said current oil prices were not high enough to threaten the world economy.
Benchmark Brent crude prices rose to nearly $118 a barrel on Friday, stoking fears that surging energy costs could harm fragile economic growth. Days earlier, Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said he was worried by high prices and the kingdom would take steps to moderate them. Iranian oil officials say oil prices are still fairly low and deny there is any danger of current prices hampering growth.
Iranian oil minister Rostam Qasemi said on Sunday crude oil ought to be at least US$150 per barrel, the Iranian Students' News Agency (ISNA) reported. “During the winter, oil prices always climb,” Qasemi said. “So it’s natural that this year as well we will have a rise in oil prices in the winter.”
Mohammad Ali Khatibi, who represents Iran on the board of governors of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) told the oil ministry news website Shana that even price-sensitive consumers saw $100 a barrel as fair. He argued that prices a “few dollars” above that level were unlikely to upset Western economies. “Current oil prices represent nominal prices of the commodity,” Khatibi was quoted as saying by Shana.
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