OPEC releases Annual Report 2002

No --
Vienna, Austria
13 Nov 2003

OPEC has been prepared to adjust oil output both upwards and downwards to bring about fair and reasonable prices, according to the Annual Report 2002, released today.

Following the price slide in the final months of 2001, joint OPEC and non-OPEC co-operation brought prices back within the OPEC price band of $22-28/barrel. This success would not have been possible if OPEC had acted alone. Co-operative efforts by non-OPEC countries greatly contributed to OPEC’s market stabilisation measures. The Reference Basket price started the year at a low of $18.33/b for January and ended in December at a high of $28.39/b. The Basket recorded a yearly average of $24.36/b, just a few cents shy of the middle of the band range.

Economic growth in OPEC Member Countries was less bright in 2002, with the average rate of GDP falling to 1.7 per cent from 2.7 per cent the previous year. The pattern of economic growth varied across Member Countries; however, reform measures introduced in several Member Countries improved the domestic business investment climate and assisted in attracting direct foreign investment in the non-oil sector.

Moderate global economic growth rates before year-end led to a decision to leave OPEC’s production ceiling unchanged for the rest of the year. However, fears of a possible supply disruption from Iraq resulted in a sharp increase in prices on world oil markets in December. In January 2003, therefore, the Organization increased output to ensure there was no shortage of oil on world markets.

The past year has demonstrated what can be achieved when OPEC and non-OPEC producer nations work together. OPEC aims to continue its efforts to achieve market stability and to ensure stable oil supplies through continued dialogue and co-operation.

To order a copy of the OPEC Annual Report 2002, please fax your request to OPEC’s PR and Information Department at +43 (0)1 214 9827, or send the information via email to  mal-saigh@opec.org. A version of the Annual Report in PDF format will shortly be available on the OPEC website at http://www.opec.org/opec_web/en/publications/337.htm