Opec to Raise Output if Oil Hits $100

25 October 2009 (Last Updated October 25th, 2009 18:30)

Opec ministers will raise output to protect the global economic recovery at a meeting in December if oil prices rise to $100 per barrel, the group's president has announced. Jose Botelho de Vasconcelos, who is also Angola's oil minister, said that producers and consumers were comfortabl

Opec ministers will raise output to protect the global economic recovery at a meeting in December if oil prices rise to $100 per barrel, the group's president has announced.

Jose Botelho de Vasconcelos, who is also Angola's oil minister, said that producers and consumers were comfortable with oil prices at between $75 and $80 a barrel, reported Reuters.

Asked if a rise in oil prices to $100 per barrel would inevitably prompt Opec to raise production at its 22 December meeting in Luanda, Botelho de Vasconcelos said that the balance needed to be maintained, according to Reuters.

Opec, which controls about a third of the world's oil production, has held down output since September 2008 following the financial crisis.

Before increasing output, Opec will have to ensure that oil market fundamentals, in terms of supply and demand, are balanced, said Botelho de Vasconcelos, adding that oil stocks remained high while the dollar was weak.

Oil prices reached $82 last week, the highest in a year.