Unanimous agreement on prices eludes OPEC

The OPEC countries ended a two-day summit meeting Thursday vowing not to make up for cutbacks in Iranian oil production but apparently failing to reach unanimous agreement on future oil price strategy. The 13-nation oil cartel also called for an increase in natural gas prices to parallel those of crude oil.

The Qatar oil minister, Sheikh Abd Al-Aziz, warned that major Arab oil producers in the cartel will not hesitate to use oil as a political weapon, as was done with 1973 embargo. Sources said chaos in the world oil market and continuing uncertainty over Persian Gulf supplies were hampering efforts by the OPEC ministers at Taif to reach a consensus on long-term strategy.

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