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OPEC, Indonesia fear oil price slide JAKARTA - OPEC, which pumps 40 per cent of the world's oil, may meet earlier than planned if the "price of oil falls too fast", Indonesia's Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro said yesterday. OPEC's next meeting is scheduled for June 11 in Doha, Qatar. "There is an oversupply of 1.3 million barrels a day in the world," Mr Yusgiantoro said.
Oil plunged 19.3 per cent last week after the US said Rumaila, Iraq's largest oil field, had been secured during the early hours of the invasion of the country. Crude oil prices rose again yesterday, adding to its biggest gain in 15 months, as resistance to the US-led invasion of Iraq raised concern that its oil will be kept off the market longer than expected.
Iraq pumped about 3 per cent of the world's oil last month. It's the third-largest producer in the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries. A change in demand patterns will also ease calls for more supply, the Indonesian minister said. "Entering the (northern) spring will also see demand fall about 2 million barrels a day, from 77 million barrels a day to 75 million," he said.
"That's why we have to prepare to face a price decline. We will try to keep the price from falling to below $US22 a barrel." He said it was possible that oil prices could fall to $US18 a barrel because OPEC could only influence up to 40 per cent of the global oil supply. OPEC would continue to monitor the situation, and would act if necessary, the group's president said yesterday.
"The recent oil price fall clearly shows that the market is well-supplied," Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah, who is also Qatar's oil minister, said in an interview with CNN. OPEC "is concerned prices may fall below our target range" of $US22 to $US28 a barrel, he said. The 11-member group has said it holds about 3 million barrels a day of spare capacity, about 500,000 more than Iraq's output before the war began.
For Indonesia, which relies on oil and gas for one quarter of its export income, its cabinet will monitor the impact of changing oil prices on the budget, which assumes a price of $US22 a barrel of crude oil, Mr Yusgiantoro said. The country faces a budget deficit of 34.4 trillion rupiah ($6.36 billion).



Posted in Economy @ 25 March 2003 00:02 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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