Iran President Says ‘Vital’ to Restore Pre-Sanctions Oil OutputBy
Rouhani Backs OPEC Efforts to Bring About Fair Crude Prices
Iranian President met with OPEC chief in Tehran on Tuesday
Iran’s President said he supports efforts by OPEC to stabilize oil prices, while reiterating that the country must restore production lost during years of sanctions.
“Iran had suffered greatly under sanctions,” Hassan Rouhani said, according to a statement on OPEC’s website citing the Iranian president. Therefore it is “vital for the country to make up its lost oil production,” he said at a meeting in Tehran Tuesday with OPEC Secretary-General Mohammed Barkindo.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries has a responsibility to restore market stability and Iran will support efforts to bring about fair prices, Rouhani said at the meeting, which was also attended by Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh.
Rouhani’s comments come as Russia and Saudi Arabia -- the world’s biggest crude producers -- said on Monday they would cooperate to stabilize oil markets, while stopping short of specific measures to achieve that. Speculation has mounted in the past month that OPEC nations and Russia may reach an agreement to freeze production when they hold informal talks in Algiers at the end of the month.
A previous attempt to freeze output failed in April after Saudi Arabia insisted Iran joined the coordinated effort. The Persian nation rejected that proposal on the grounds it hadn’t recovered its lost market share after sanctions over its nuclear program were lifted in January.
“Iran will support any measure toward market stabilization and oil price recovery that is based on a fair and just share for member countries,” Rouhani said after the meeting in Tehran, according to the state-run IRNA news agency.
Iran has increased its crude output by more than a quarter this year, reaching 3.62 million barrels a day last month, according to a Bloomberg News survey.