OPEC would mull oil output boost at $100: Kuwait

By Eman Goma

KUWAIT (BestGrowthStock) – OPEC would make a decision on whether to boost output to calm oil prices if the market passed $100 a barrel, Kuwait’s oil minister said on Thursday.

U.S. crude traded around $85 a barrel on Thursday, a little above the $70 to $80 range that OPEC’s largest producer Saudi Arabia has said was fair for both consumers and producers.

“Above $100… we would take a decision in this regard,” Sheikh Ahmad al-Abdullah al-Sabah told reporters at Kuwait’s parliament, when asked how high the producer group would allow prices to rise before acting.

Oil is within sight of an 18 month high of just over $87 a barrel reached earlier this month. Yet there has been little sign from OPEC that it might increase output to cool prices.

OPEC delegates said earlier this week an oil price above $90-$95 would prompt the group to consider raising output.

Oil prices so far have stayed below levels that would damage the global economic recovery, Sheikh Ahmad said.

The world’s fourth-largest exporter was happy with the current price level, he added.

The price recovery from a low near $32 in December 2008 has boosted revenues for Gulf countries, allowing them to keep fiscal stimulus packages in place at a time many countries are considering spending cuts and facing mounting debt.

Higher-than-expected oil revenues boosted Kuwait’s budget surplus in the first 11 months of the 2009-2010 fiscal year to 8.33 billion Kuwaiti dinars ($29 billion). Kuwait’s fiscal year begins in April.

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(Writing by Simon Webb; editing by James Jukwey)

OPEC would mull oil output boost at $100: Kuwait