Opec may increase production in February - Khelil

17 December 2007
The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) may increase production from February next year, according to the organisation’s president-designate.

Algerian Energy Minister Chakib Khelil said that cold weather might justify an increase in output, despite standing by current production levels earlier this month, according to a Bloomberg report.

“The forecasts now point toward a cold winter, and the economy seems to be improving,” said Khelil in an interview in Limassol, Cyprus, on 16 December. “That means stronger demand. The likelihood that we will decide to increase output is greater than the likelihood of us reducing output.”

In early December, Khelil was adamant that production would not be increased without good reason. The current high level of oil stocks did not justify a production increase, he said (MEED 3:12:07).

Khelil will replace the UAE's Mohamed al-Hamli as head of the oil cartel on 1 January.

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