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Iran wants united front at OPEC meeting

  |   June 4, 2012 at 8:18 AM
BAGHDAD, June 4 (UPI) -- Iran called on leaders in neighboring Iraq to present a unified front during upcoming OPEC talks, an Iranian minister said.

Members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries gather in Vienna for a regular meeting next week amid slumping oil prices.

Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Ghasemi met in Baghdad with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to discuss the need to reach a unified position on production quotas, Iran's state-funded broadcaster Press TV reports. He said both sides would press for a stronger stance on production quotas.

Saudi Arabia, Iran and Iraq make up the top three in terms of oil production among OPEC member states. Riyadh has consistently pumped more crude oil this year as Western allies shun Iranian crude amid sanctions pressure.

OPEC production as of April reached 31.6 million barrels per day, more than 1 million more than the current production ceiling, reports Bloomberg News.

Oil prices have declined amid weak economic data and Tehran is considered an oil-price hawk, pressing for prices of more than $100 per barrel.

For its part, while Iraqi oil production is increasing, there was little interest Baghdad's latest international oil and natural gas auction because of the terms of the contracts.

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