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OPEC eyes markets ahead of next meeting

Sept. 22, 2011 at 6:09 AM

VIENNA, Sept. 22 (UPI) -- With another year before Libyan oil production returns to normal, one official at OPEC said from Vienna it was the economy that would determine crude output.

A member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries told Bloomberg News on condition of anonymity that Saudi Arabia would keep its production rates high to meet global demands so long as the economic troubles in U.S. and European markets are contained.

OPEC during its June meeting kept production quotas static despite concerns that higher energy prices would undermine economic recovery across the board. The decision came despite the impact the Libyan war had on overall oil supplies.

Gerhard Roiss, chief executive officer at Austrian energy company OMV, told Bloomberg it might be as along ad 18 months before oil production in Libya returns to pre-conflict levels.

Libya was producing around 1.3 million barrels of oil per day before the war, accounting for 10 percent of OMV's production in 2010.

OPEC next meets Dec. 14.

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