/ 19 May 2008

Opec president says oil market well supplied

Oil markets are well supplied and high prices are the result of speculation, a weak dollar and geopolitical problems, Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) president Chakib Khelil said on Monday.

”As for Opec, indications show that there is no shortage [of supply],” he told a public forum on energy organised by Algerian government newspaper El Moudjahid.

”The market is well supplied and stocks are adequate. Opec has a spare capacity that would allow it to meet additional demand.”

”Opec, as a player, contributes to stabilising the market.”

Opec produces more than a third of the world’s oil. Its most influential member, Saudi Arabia, said on Friday it had boosted output by 300 000 barrels per day.

US President George Bush said on Saturday he was pleased with the Saudi move but that it was inadequate to solve problems in the world’s largest energy consumer.

Oil traded at more than $126 a barrel on Monday after jumping to a record high near $128 last week.

Opec is next due to meet in September to decide on output policy. — Reuters