Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani has called on Iranian President Mohammad Khatami to "support the oil market to avoid a fall in the price of a barrel," the official IRNA agency reported Monday.
The agency said that the emir told Khatami in a telephone call late Sunday that "Iran's role in decisions taken by OPEC was effective and determining."
During the conversation, Khatami said that "thanks to the wisdom of the members of OPEC, the drop in prices would stop and that a stable price would apply to the benefit of producers and consumers."
Iran is the second biggest exporter in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
A barrel of Brent reference crude for April delivery was selling for $26.20 on Friday, while in New York, the light sweet crude March contract gained 39 cents to stand at $28.01 a barrel.
Prices have risen amid concerns that OPEC will squeeze its output when it meets in Vienna on March 16 in response to the consumer market's slowing demand.
The cartel wants prices to stabilize at around $25 per barrel. But its basket price for seven world cruds slipped to $23.64 on Thursday from $23.81 on Wednesday.—AFP.
©--Agence France Presse 2001.
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )