Strategic Briefing | 6.2.2011 | OPEC’s June 8 Meeting

Oil prices slide ahead of OPEC meeting
AFP | June 6
Oil prices fell on Monday as traders took profits and geared up for this week’s key OPEC meeting in Vienna… Oil had fallen sharply on Friday after publication of dismal US jobs figures for May but recovered by the end of the day for a modest loss… The 12-nation Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will meet Wednesday in Vienna amid growing fears that high prices could further dent faltering world economic growth and energy demand.

OPEC Upstaged by Qaddafi in Most-Hostile Meeting Since Gulf War
Bloomberg | June 6
OPEC’s decision on production quotas this week may be complicated by hostilities in Libya as members meeting in Vienna find themselves supporting opposing camps of a military conflict for the first time in 21 years. Not since Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait in 1990 has the producer group gathered with some nations giving financial and military support to a movement seeking to topple the government of a fellow member. While Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi is trying to quash a rebellion in a country that holds Africa’s largest crude reserves, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates are backing the insurgents.
Rift Over Output at OPEC
The Wall Street Journal | June 6
Several Persian Gulf countries favor an increase in OPEC’s oil output, setting the stage for a public fight with Iran when the group meets this week. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is scheduled to meet on Wednesday in Vienna. Until recently, the consensus among market participants was that the group wouldn’t take any action given that crude-oil futures prices in the U.S. are hovering around $100 a barrel. However, some influential voices have shifted their views in recent days. “Saudi Arabia and Kuwait want an output increase to meet the expected demand later in the year, and the United Arab Emirates will likely follow suit,” said a Gulf delegate.
Total CEO says oil market is well supplied
Reuters | June 6
OPEC will do its part to ensure there is no shortage of oil supply in the market, the chief executive of the French energy giant Total said on Monday. Gulf Arab members led by Saudi Arabia will push for an increase in supplies when OPEC ministers meet this week, in an effort to support flagging world economic growth by bringing crude prices back below $100 a barrel. “Today there is no shortage of supply. OPEC will do its job.” Christophe de Margerie told reporters at an oil and gas conference in Kuala Lumpur.
Oil price ‘should remain’ under $80: Petronas CEO
AFP | June 6
Malaysian state energy firm Petronas said Monday that the crude oil market’s current fundamentals call for lower oil prices. “Given the current state of market fundamentals and cost environment, I believe prices should remain within the range of $75 to $80 a barrel,” Shamsul Azhar Abbas, the oil company’s chief executive officer said at an industry gathering. Meanwhile, Ahmed Ghalehbani, Iran’s deputy petroleum minister said his country was “okay” with current oil output levels. Iran is the second-largest producer in the 12-nation Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). Ghalehbani said Iran’s position at the upcoming OPEC meeting Wednesday will be to hold production quotas at current levels.
Will OPEC increase, or leave oil output unchanged next week?
Live Oil Prices | June 5
An economic advisory group within OPEC on Friday presented findings showing global oil demand would increase significantly in the second half of 2011, according to a senior OPEC delegate from a Persian Gulf country. “The most likely outcome of the meeting will be an increase. The amount of the increase is yet to be decided by OPEC ministers, all the numbers in the market now are just guesswork.” according the OPEC delegate. The numbers presented at the meeting suggested OPEC will need to boost its oil production quotas beyond current output levels. The eleven member nations bound by quotas, Iraq is exempt, are already producing about 1.5 million barrels a day above allotments totaling 24.845 million barrels a day.