Dec 06, 2018 17:44 Asia/Tehran

Iranian oil Minister, Bijan Zangeneh says it's not fair during imposed sanctions to ask Iran to further cut its oil production.   

Iran news: "We are not ready to cut our production but Iran supports any decision made by OPEC members for managing the market, but during the imposed sanctions it's not fair to reduce anything more", Bijan Zangeneh told CNBC on the sideline of 175th meeting of OPEC ministers in Vienna.

According to an Iran Press report, Iranian oil Minister who is currently in Vienna, attending the OPEC conference on Thursday and Friday, met and discussed Qatar's withdrawal from OPEC with his Qatari counterpart Saad al-Kaabi at Kempinski Hotel. The meeting was held before the OPEC ministers 175th meeting later on Thursday.

The two ministers also spoke about reduced share of OPEC members in the oil market and the growing involvement of other countries in the organization’s decisions in recent years, as well as the cooperation of the two countries for developing the joint South Pars gas field in the waters of the Persian Gulf, according to SHANA news agency.

Zangeneh and al-Kaabi talked about expansion of cooperation between Tehran and Doha.

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Iranian oil minister upon his arrival to Vienna late on Wednesday, slammed US special representative for Iran Brian Hook remarks in meetings with members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries in Vienna, asserting that OPEC is an independent body which does not take orders from Washington.

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"The US official has adopted an unprofessional, naive, and meddlesome approach". Zangeneh added that "OPEC is an independent organization, not a part of the US Department of Energy. Thus, OPEC does not take orders from Washington."

Hook's meeting with the Saudi official came after Riyadh indicated a need for steep reductions in output from January. However, it has come under pressure from US President Donald Trump, who has urged Riyadh to refrain from output cuts in order to keep oil prices low.

Upon arrival at Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna, Zanganeh told reporters that Iran has always supported OPEC and its decisions for the stabilization of the market, but at this juncture, "Iran will not join any deal on production level as long as the [US] sanctions are in place."

He also noted that Iran will not join the Joint OPEC-Non-OPEC Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC), which is monitoring the implementation of the oil output cut deal and issues recommendations for changing its conditions.

OPEC members met on Thursday and will have a meeting with allies such as Russia on Friday. The meetings are expected to be focused on a deal to reduce output.

The production surge took place in the run-up to Trump’s pledge to sanction Iran’s oil sector on November 4 and later decided to give waivers from sanctions to some customers.

Major producers such as Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the UAE and Kuwait pounced on the occasion to produce as much oil as they could, anticipating a steep drop in Iran’s exports which did not happen.

The move has frustrated many producers, prompting Qatar to announce that it was quitting OPEC to focus on gas in a swipe at Saudi Arabia.  205/ 211 /103

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