Iran rejects plan to raise oil output within OPEC


He acknowledged that a big production hike might be "politically unacceptable" to some OPEC countries and said it was important to be "sensitive" to those concerns.

Brent crude futures rose 18c, or 0.2%, to $75.26 a barrel at 3.51am GMT, compared with their last close on Tuesday.

He said now high oil prices dent the economic development of many countries.

The actual output increases set a bullish tone, as they came in below some of the highest figures that had been discussed prior to the meeting. "Need to keep prices down!" he said in a tweet.

Another big uncertainty for oil is the escalating dispute between the United States and its trading partners, which could hit U.S. crude oil exports to China.

Iran is particularly vocal about its objections as it braces for the impact of fresh U.S. sanctions on its oil exports after President Donald Trump quit the global nuclear agreement.

The 24 nations in the supply-cut pact, known as OPEC+, agreed in late 2016 to trim production by 1.8 million barrels a day but they have actually been keeping some 2.8 million barrels per day off the market.

By avoiding setting individual country targets, the deal appears to give Saudi Arabia the leeway to produce more than its official OPEC target and fill the gap left by those like Venezuela who can not pump enough to meet their official allocation.

Resistance is being led by Iran, deeply wary of any move by regional rival Saudi Arabia that could push down oil prices at a time when Tehran faces renewed sanctions following US President Donald Trump's decision to quit its global nuclear deal, which is likely to impact the country's oil exports.

Trump slapped fresh sanctions on Tehran in May and market watchers expect Iran's output to drop by a third by the end of 2018. Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Thursday the world needed at least an extra 1 million bpd to avoid a shortage in the second half of 2018.

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Non-OPEC countries like Russian Federation had agreed in 2016 to participate in OPEC's effort to raise prices, cutting 600,000 barrels a day of their own production. The measure has helped rebalance the market in the past 18 months and lifted oil LCOc1 to around $73 per barrel from as low as $27 in 2016.

The decision sparked concerns in the USA that China would turn to Iran as a potential oil supplier, buoying the Iranian market in the midst of the White House's reinstatement of hardline sanctions on Tehran. At the same time, higher Saudi Arabian production reduces spare capacity.

He said that there are "many, many options. and we will settle to one of those options".

Opec used the opening of the meeting to make it clear the group did not want to see prices sliding too much because of a rise in supplies.

The prince, who is Saudi minister of state for energy affairs, was speaking at the OPEC seminar in Vienna, ahead of what is likely to be a hard meeting.

"President Trump thinks that [he] can order to OPEC and instruct to OPEC to do something", he said.

Iranian oil minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said as the group met Friday that "we are not here to receive instruction from President Trump and apply it and implement it".

He went on to say that according to International Energy Agency reports, there is no imbalance in the global oil market, however, next year's situation is another issue.

But OPEC officials are increasingly confident a deal will be reached.