OPEC Maintains Current Output Levels

Outgoing OPEC Secretary General Ali Rodriguez said the cartel would not raise oil output during the upcoming summit in Vienna, the state IRNA news agency reported. "OPEC's current oil output will be preserved during the summit" on June 26, Rodriguez was quoted as saying.

OPEC slashed production by 1.5 million barrels per day from January for a period of six months, under an agreement with leading non-OPEC oil exporters to shore up sagging prices.

The cartel is under pressure from consumer countries to increase output amid concern that high oil prices could hinder the recovery of the global economy. Oil prices currently stand at between US $25-$26 a barrel, and experts predict they will move lower amid an easing of Middle East tensions. Rodriguez, who has been named to head PDVSA, will remain in his OPEC post until the June 26 meeting. A successor is expected to be named during the Vienna meeting and Venezuela is tipped to field a candidate.


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