TOKYO, (Reuters) – Kuwait on Monday assured Japan of stable oil supplies, while the two governments agreed that current high prices were against the interests of both oil producers and consumers.
Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammed al-Sabah made the commitment on exports in an agreement signed with Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda during a visit to Tokyo.
Kuwait supplied more than 17 million kilolitres of oil to Japan in 2007, or 7.2 percent of the resource-poor country’s oil imports.
Oil prices were close to $124 a barrel on Monday, well below their recent peak of $147 a barrel, but still way up on levels of about $90 a barrel at the end of last year.
“The two sides shared the view that the current oil price level is unprecedented and it is against the interest of both oil consuming and producing countries,” the two leaders said in their statement.
“The Kuwaiti side expressed its commitment to assure stable oil supplies to Japan” and Japan welcomed a Kuwaiti initiative to increase oil production in the first half of next year, they said.
The two sides also reaffirmed their desire to strengthen technical cooperation and to start a joint research project on the use of CO2 to improve oil recovery.