Iran hopes OPEC cut would push oil prices to 150 dollars

TEHRAN, October 21, 2008 (AFP) – Iran’s oil minister said on Tuesday that Tehran believes OPEC should cut production by between two million and 2.5 million barrels a day, and that prices could go higher than 150 dollars a barrel. Attiyah also said OPEC “might be obliged to reduce production to balance supply and demand,” at Friday’s meeting in Vienna.

Iran’s ambassador to OPEC, whose 12 member-states together pump about 40 percent of the world’s oil with an official quota of 28.8 million bpd, said on Monday that the cartel may agree to cut oil production in stages.

“The market should find a stable condition, and given the eight to 10 percent decrease in demand and also given the oil stockpile I think a decrease of between two and 2.5 million barrels a day can bring a stable status to the market,” Gholam Hossein Nozari said at a press conference in Tehran.

World oil prices have increased in recent days on expectations that OPEC will cut output at its meeting on Friday but are still around half the record highs of more than 147 dollars a barrel seen in July.

“Given inflation and the current circumstances of the market, the current oil price is very low, and 150 dollars should not be out of the question,” Nozari sa