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Associated Press: UAE: Include Iraq in OPEC Decision Sunday, February 7, 1999; 6:48 p.m. EST ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) -- Iraq should be part of any ``serious'' future agreement by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to further cut output, United Arab Emirates Oil Minister Obaid bin Saif Al-Nasseri said late Sunday. ``There is no point in having an agreement while Iraq is making up for the quantity that has been agreed to be cut or lifted from the market,'' the minister said in an interview with Dow Jones Newswires following talks with visiting U.S. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson. Ministers of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries are expected to meet on March 23 to discuss oil prices, which have plummeted to near-record lows because of an oil supply glut. Iraq, however, is unlikely to agree to any cuts. Iraq was exempted from the 2.6 million barrels a day in OPEC production cuts agreed to by the other 10 OPEC members in 1998 because its production levels are controlled by the United Nations' through the U.N.-Iraq oil-for-food deal. Last year, the United Nations boosted Iraq's allowed oil sales to $5.2 billion every six months from $2 billion every six months. Iraq is now pumping at its maximum capacity of 2.5 million barrels a day and is looking to buy spare parts for its dilapidated oil industry to boost production. With oil prices hovering between $11-$12 a barrel, however, Iraq is only earning about $3 billion every six months from oil sales. When asked whether he thought Iraq would agree to cut oil production -- when oil sales are the only funds it gets under sanctions for humanitarian aid for its people -- Nasseri said ``to agree or not to agree is their decision.'' Iraq has said it desperately needs the oil revenues and has called on Saudi Arabia, OPEC's largest producer, to cut its production. After Iraq was banned from exporting oil, Saudi Arabia took over most of its pre-1990 OPEC daily quota of about 3 million barrels. Saudi Arabia has refused to relinquish the additional production capacity even though Iraq has resumed exporting oil. -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To be removed/added, email firstname.lastname@example.org, NOT the whole list. Archived at http://linux.clare.cam.ac.uk/~saw27/casi/discuss.html