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Libya Oil Co. Head: OPEC Would Cut Again In Dec If Needed

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 10/18/2006, Location: Africa

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries stands ready to cut production again at its next meeting in December should market conditions warrant it, the head of Libya's national oil company Shokri Ghanem said. "If we need to we will do it," Ghanem told reporters.

Ghanem said Libya would support any OPEC cut and could trim 60,000 to 70,000 barrels a day of its own output. He said he expects a one million barrels a day output cut from OPEC - expected to be endorsed on Thursday - would take effect on Nov. 1.

Shokri echoed the views of others in the group saying Libya supports cutting from OPEC's current production rather than reevaluating each country's nominal quota within the cartel.

Libya pumped about 1.7 million barrels a day in September according to a DJN survey, 200,000 barrels above its OPEC quota. That puts it in the camp of those who favor cutting from the current OPEC output of about 27.5 million barrels a day rather than from its output ceiling of 28 million barrels. The latter would mean a real cut of just half a million barrels, far less than 1% of the roughly 84 million barrels a day the world consumes.

Ghanem said he thinks a cut of one million now "will keep a balance between supply and demand in the market. It should at least take (away) the extra barrels that are available in the market."

The official noted that oil rice fluctuations were expected at this time of the year to begin with and a cut of one million barrels "would be enough to rebalance the market."

Benchmark oil futures have fallen some 25% since mid-July, hurt by signs of slowing global economic growth, brimming oil inventories in consuming nations and renewed calm in the Middle East.

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