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Oil Minister: Iran wants to send positive signal to oil markets

Amsterdam, May 23, IRNA -- Iranian oil minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said in Amsterdam on Sunday that the Islamic Republic was ready to do its part in calming the current turbulent situation in in the world oil market.

"I believe in this situation it is necessary for me to send a positive signal to the market to satisfy our consumers in developed and developing countries," Zanganeh told a press conference here Sunday in response to a question on Iran`s consent to a raise in OPEC`s output.

The Iranian oil minister said, "I believe we don`t have a shortage in the market now but for a short term it is necessary to send a positive signal."

Zanganeh is in Amsterdam to participate in a major energy conference.

He said there is consensus that some part of the reason for the current high oil price is because of political tensions in the Middle East, "not only Iraq but the whole of Middle East."

Other reasons for the high oil price were refinery shortage in the US and speculations in the oil market.

"We are not satisfied with the current situation. We have announced it several times that we want to have a lower price. We still stick to the price-band dlrs 22-28," he said adding "we prefer the higher side of this band. dlrs 28 is very good for us."

Zanganeh further underlined that ``OPEC needs to have a consensus" in making any comprehensive decision.

He noted that Iran has "very good" relations with Europe in the energy sector notably with France, Italy, Netherlands, and UK.

"We believe that Europe is going to diversify its energy sources and Iran can play the most important role," he stressed.

The 9th International Energy Forum, organized by the Dutch economy ministry and co-chaired by Iran and Norway, will end on Monday.

Zanganeh chaired the Sunday`s afternoon session which focused on the core issue of the IEF: investments in exploration, production and transport of energy.

The International Energy Forum (IEF) is the biennial informal Ministerial Meeting, bringing together both the energy producing and consuming countries to discuss the world`s major energy issues.

The first Producer-Consumer Dialogue was held between ministers of oil and gas producing and consuming countries in Paris in 1991.

In 1999, the Producer-Consumer Dialogue was renamed the International Energy Forum.

... Payvand News - 5/24/04 ... --

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