OPEC ministers signal no change in output targets

Prices are relatively high. The average cost of the group

Saudi Arabia's Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Ali Ibrahim Naimi arrives for a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, at their headquarters in Vienna, Austria, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012 . (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

VIENNA (AP) — OPEC oil ministers are signaling that they will stick to present daily output targets of 30 million barrels at their meeting Wednesday.

Prices are relatively high. The average cost of the group's oil basket — a mix of grades produced by OPEC countries — has been above $100 a barrel for the last two years. That's a first in OPEC's history.

Such levels cover production costs for most OPEC countries and leave a profit. That means OPEC ministers are unlikely to see the need for cutting back, particularly because reducing output drives up prices, which in turn will lead to even weaker demand during the present economic hard times.

United Arab Emirates Energy Minister Mohamed bin Dhaen Al Hamli at the meeting said present OPEC production "is reasonable."

Associated Press
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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