OPEC considers further measures to help ease problems caused by Hurricane Katrina

No 12/2005
Vienna, Austria
02 Sep 2005

OPEC is considering what other measures it can take to help ease the severe problems caused by Hurricane Katrina, which had devastating consequences for the south-east of the United States of America earlier this week.

Such measures would be in addition to the offers of extra crude supplies to customers that have already been made by Member Countries with remaining, sizeable spare capacity.

The President of the OPEC Conference and Secretary General, His Excellency Sheikh Ahmad Fahad Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, who is also Kuwait’s Minister of Energy, announced today that he was in consultations with OPEC’s other Ministers of Oil and Energy identifying what additional measures could be taken.

HE Sheikh Al-Sabah said that such an action would be in the spirit of cooperation between producers and consumers in the interests of oil market stability, at a time when a natural disaster of great magnitude has caused a significant reduction in energy supplies in the United States, a major oil-consuming nation, with implications for the global energy market.

He added that he was also in touch with the US authorities and the International Energy Agency, with a view to determining more precisely the nature of the country’s needs and any additional measures producers may be able to take.

Speaking as Kuwait’s Minister of Energy, HE Sheikh Al-Sabah said that the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation was looking into what could be done in terms of contributing supplies of crude and products, to ease the fuel shortages faced by the United States.

On 31 August 2005, shortly after the hurricane struck the southern states of the USA, the OPEC President sent a message, on behalf of OPEC, to the US Secretary of Energy, Samuel W. Bodman, expressing the condolences of the Organization to the Government and the people of the USA, and reassuring him that OPEC Member Countries would continue their ongoing efforts to ensure that the oil market remained well-supplied with the crude oil it required and that these countries stood ready to consider whatever other ways they might be able to assist.

OPEC will give all these matters further serious consideration at the forthcoming Meeting of its Conference in Vienna, Austria, on 19 September 2005.