Iran oil minister opposes emergency OPEC talks

Updated 21 April 2013
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Iran oil minister opposes emergency OPEC talks

TEHRAN: Iran sees no need for an emergency meeting of OPEC over a recent drop in crude prices before the producers’ annual session at the end of May, Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi sai.
“No extraordinary meeting is needed as the May 31 meeting is coming up, and the price of oil had not gone below $ 100 per barrel for a long time,” Qasemi said on the sidelines of an oil and gas trade fair in Tehran.
In the last meeting of OPEC, held on December 12, oil producers decided to hold an emergency session if oil prices fall below 100 dollars per barrel, Qasemi said.
His remarks came after Venezuela’s top oil official reportedly said earlier that OPEC officials were weighing holding a special meeting on the market if prices continue to fall.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is set to meet in Vienna on May 31.
Oil prices gained Friday on speculation that OPEC plans to cut output, recovering somewhat from sharp losses earlier in the week over worries about weakening Chinese economic growth.
In New York, the main contract, WTI crude for delivery in May, added 28 cents from Thursday to end at $ 88.01 a barrel.
In London, Brent North Sea crude for delivery in June gained 52 cents to $ 99.65 a barrel, unable to hold onto a rebound above the $ 100 line earlier in the day.
Iran is OPEC’s fourth biggest producer, after Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Kuwait, according to the group’s data. In 2011, it ranked second.
But under sanctions over its controversial nuclear program, Iran’s output dropped to 2.67 million barrels per day in February, from 2.72 the previous month, OPEC said in April, citing secondary sources.
Qasemi did not talk about the figures but confirmed that Iran’s oil production and export indeed declined in 2012.
“Our export has declined (in 2012) compared to the previous year because the European nations are not buying from us and naturally we have had a decline in oil production,” he said.
“Except for our European customers, we still have our other customers and we are talking to others for new deals,” Qasemi said.
Qasemi said Iran was talking to North Korea to buy Iranian oil.
“We hope to reach an agreement over North Korea importing oil from us,” he said.
North Korea, an ally of Iran since the 1979 Islamic revolution, is also under Western and UN sanctions over its nuclear program.
OPEC had voted to re-appoint Secretary General Abdullah El-Badri to lead OPEC for another year after members failed to agree on a new leader in December.
The world’s biggest oil exporter Saudi Arabia had been battling against Iraq and Iran to have its candidate succeed El-Badri, who has steered the cartel through the world’s financial crisis as its secretary general since 2007.
Qasemi said Iran is also pushing for its own nominee, former oil minister Gholam Hossein Nozari, to take El-Badri’s post.
“We are still in contact with the members about our nominee, since the appointment has to happen on consensus,” he said.


Saudi minister Al-Falih says Aramco IPO likely in 2019

Updated 25 May 2018
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Saudi minister Al-Falih says Aramco IPO likely in 2019

  • Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih: “We are ready, the company (Saudi Aramco) essentially has ticked all the boxes. We’re simply waiting for a market readiness for the IPO.”
  • Khalid Al-Falih: “Most likely it will be in 2019 but we will not know until the announcement has been made. All I could say is stay tuned.”

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia is most likely to hold the initial public offering (IPO) of oil giant Aramco in 2019, Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said on Friday, confirming a delay from the initial plan to list the company this year.

“The timing I think will depend on the readiness of the market, rather than the readiness of the company or the readiness of Saudi Arabia,” Khalid Al-Falih, who’s also the company’s chairman, said at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum in Russia on Friday.

“We are ready, the company essentially has ticked all the boxes,” he said. “We’re simply waiting for a market readiness for the IPO.”

For almost two years, Saudi officials said the IPO was “on track, on time” for the second half of 2018. But for the first time in March they suggested it could be delayed until 2019.

“Most likely it will be in 2019 but we will not know until the announcement has been made,” Al-Falih said. “All I could say is stay tuned.”

The Aramco IPO would be a once-in-a-generation event for financial markets. Saudi officials said they hope to raise a record $100 billion by selling a 5 percent stake, valuing the company at more than $2 trillion and dwarfing the $25 billion raised by Chinese retailer Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. in 2014.