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Venezuela calls for emergency OPEC summit in February to discuss falling oil prices

By Tajuddin
In BUSINESS
Jan 22nd, 2016
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Eulogio del Pino,Minister of Oil and Mining of Venezuela

Eulogio del Pino,Minister of Oil and Mining of Venezuela

Caracas,Venezuela (Xinhua + DIPLOMAT.SO) – Venezuela on Thursday called on the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other oil-producing nations to hold an emergency meeting in February to discuss falling oil prices.

Eulogio del Pino, the Minister of Oil and Mining, said the meeting should be held in February in order to rapidly decide on policies that would stabilize the market.

Venezuela is calling for this meeting as the budgets of OPEC members are being devastated by the vertiginous drop in oil prices. On Wednesday, the U.S. oil prices fell below 27 U.S. dollars a barrel, the lowest level in 13 years.

However, del Pino said despite the plummeting prices, the production costs per barrel remain “far lower” than the final sales price.

Despite this reassurance, Venezuela is making use of every tool at its disposal to stop the fall, since 96 percent of the country’s income depends on oil.

During the latest OPEC summit held in Vienna in December, del Pino tabled a proposal, backed by Ecuador, to reduce OPEC production by 5 percent to lower pressures caused by oversupply worries.

However, this proposal was not endorsed by the cartel, which accounts for around 40 percent of the global crude output.

In November, President Nicolas Maduro, at the Gas Exporting Countries Forum in Iran, said the market needed to defend itself from “international speculation attacks.”

OPEC currently produces about 33 million barrels of oil a day, led by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela.

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