(AA) – Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said Sunday that OPEC member states were optimistic about international oil prices.
“We also have good intentions,” al-Naimi said.
He added at a Gulf petroleum media gathering in Saudi capital Riyadh that oil prices were decided on the basis of offer and demand.
Al-Naimi said an unjustified rise in international oil prices would cause harm to everybody.
He said the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries did not reduce production because its member states had learned a lesson from the 1980s when they reduced production, but oil prices continued to fall because of an increase of oil production by the U.S.
In November of 2014, OPEC member states decided to keep their production at 30 million barrels a day.
Al-Naimi ruled out the presence of any political considerations behind the decision to keep the oil production intact.
The Saudi minister, meanwhile, said OPEC welcomed increasing the number of its member states, in reference to Russia.
“The organization has addressed many countries to join it, but they did not respond,” al-Naimi said.
OPEC now includes Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Angola, Kuwait, Qatar, Venezuela, Ecuador, Libya, Algeria and Nigeria.
The member states of the organization produce a third of international oil output.