DAVOS, (Reuters) – Iran’s OPEC governor said on Saturday that there was no call for the group to hold an extraordinary meeting despite oil prices hitting a 28-month peak closing on $100 a barrel after unrest in Egypt.
“As far as I know there has been no call for any extraordinary meeting for the time being,” Mohammad Ali Khatibi told Reuters in a telephone interview.
Holding OPEC’s presidency this year, Iran’s oil minister would be required to call for an extraordinary meeting before the planned June date if needed.
Brent oil prices hit a 28-month peak on Friday, nearing $100 a barrel while U.S. crude surged more than 4 percent as anti-government protests in Egypt — which is not an OPEC member — rattled markets.
Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak addressed the nation after oil markets had closed and said Egypt needed dialogue not violence to end problems that led to days of protests.
He replaced his cabinet on Saturday and ordered troops and tanks into the capital Cairo in an effort to quell protests that have shaken the Arab world’s most populous nation to the core.
“It’s normal for the prices to increase like that after such events, it’s just a normal fluctuation in the market that’s all,” said Khatibi.
PLENTY OF SUPPLY
A number of OPEC members have indicated that the market is still well supplied, with latest comments from the UAE’s oil minister Mohamed al-Hamli this week who expressed no concern about current supply levels.
OPEC Secretary-General Abdullah al-Badri also said the market was “well supplied.”
Saudi Arabia’s influential minister Ali al-Naimi had indicated that demand was growing and if there was a need for extra supply OPEC had enough spare capacity to pump more into the market.
Naimi’s comments came after the International Energy Agency (IEA) issued a report this month claiming that the world’s largest crude exporter was producing above its OPEC quota.