OPEC welcomes Angola’s decision and awaits formal request for membership

1 December 2006

Paris, France, 01 Dec – The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has welcomed the Angolan government’s decision to join and is awaiting an official membership request, an organization spokesperson said Thursday in Paris.

Angola has “for years” been attending OPEC meetings as an observer and this, “if it has taken the decision to join it is clearly a good option,” said Omar Farouk Ibrahim, director of OPEC’s public relations.

OPEC has not yet received a formal membership request from Angola, Ibrahim said, and therefore the issue of membership is not likely to be dealt with at the next member’s meeting due December 14 in Nigeria.

The formal request, Ibrahim said, would possibly only be presented in the first quarter of 2007, after the procedures required by the country’s laws.

OPEC currently has 11 members – Algeria, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Indonesia, Nigeria, Venezuela, Kuwait and Qatar.

The Angolan Council of Ministers said Wednesday that it had taken the decision to join OPEC.

With current production of 1.4 million barrels per day, Angola is the second-largest oil producer in sub-Saharan Africa, after Nigeria, and sector authorities expect production to reach 2 million barrels per day in 2007, as new wells go into operation.

If it joins OPEC, and according to the rules of the organization, it will be attributed a production quota, which will vary according to world demand and also take into account production capacity. (macauhub)