Opec may cut output if price trends down

Opec should consider cutting oil production at the next meeting if member nations determine that recent price declines constitute a sustained downturn, Venezuela’s Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez said on Friday.

Oil prices of Friday fell below $115 per barrel, ending a week of volatile trading that followed a mid-July peak above $147 per barrel, leading some Opec nations to suggest the cartel should consider changing output levels.

”There has been a lot of fluctuation in the price, but what has to be seen are the trends,” Ramirez told reporters.

”In Opec we have to evaluate if this is becoming a downward trend in order to make a decision about production. That is our proposal, but we have to consider it there in Opec.”

The organisation is scheduled to meet in early September.

He said he could not rule out ”a priori” that the group might lower output, but said ”nobody is thinking about adding new production to the market”.

He added that Opec would evaluate if there have been noticeable increases in global oil inventories or if there are signs the market is being inundated with crude.

”Yes, there is plenty of oil in the market,” he said, asked if markets were well-supplied. – Reuters

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