Iran nominates OPEC SecGen candidate
Gholam-Hossein Nozari nominated, decision set for next OPEC meeting
Iran has nominated its preferred successor to OPEC Secretary General Abdalla Salem El-Badri in a letter to the OPEC secretariat, reports the Mehr news agency.
Gholam-Hossein Nozari, an oil minister in Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s first term and former head of Iran’s national oil company, has been nominated by Tehran. Nozari has been chairman of Pars Oil Company since 2010.
Iraq – which is not yet returned as a full OPEC member - nominated its former oil minister Thamir Ghadhban on 6 March. Saudi Arabia has nominated Majid Al-Moneef, Saudi's governor at OPEC, for the post. Ecuador, OPEC’s smallest producer, has nominated its Oil Minister Wilson Pastor.
The letter came as OPEC is preparing to hold its 161st session in its headquarters in Vienna on June 14, where a new Secretary General will be appointed and its cartel-wide production target of 30 million barrels per day will be reviewed.
Negotiations over the position are likely to again raise tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia, already inflamed by the Kingdom’s increase in production within OPEC’s allocation to compensate for a drop in Iranian crude exports.
El-Badri is due to complete his second term as OPEC Secretary-General at the end of this year.
Ahead of the OPEC meeting, IEA chief Maria van der Hoeven has warned that at $100 per barrel, oil prices remain too high.