International consensus to keep oil prices stable hailed
The decision to maintain oil production quotas at their current levels at an OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) meeting in Osaka has been praised by UK Energy Minister Brian Wilson. The Minister said there is the 'strongest ever consensus' against sharp fluctuations in the price of oil.
Mr Wilson said that the consensus among both producer and consumer nations was a vital safeguard at a time of international uncertainty. Historically, such conditions have given rise to large increases in the price of oil.
The Energy Minister said:
"OPEC and other producers have the flexibility to increase output if circumstances create a pressure to do so. However, lack of supply is not the problem at present."
Commenting on the belief that the upward pressure on prices is caused by international uncertainty, the Minister said:
"Increasing production at the present time is not going to address that factor. But if the trend strengthens, there is a clear consensus to act in order to avoid a sustained period of damaging high prices."