OPEC seeks to steady market

THE Saudi oil minister and his Gulf partners renewed pressure Saturday on independent oil producers to cut production and steady the world market. Oil Minister Hisham Nazer and the Gulf Cooperation Council are trying to coordinate policy before a March 25 meeting in Geneva of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. ``We are looking forward to non-OPEC oil producers showing the necessary cooperation to support oil prices and ensure stability to the oil market,'' said Ahmed Saeed al-Badi, acting oil minister of the United Arab Emirates.

OPEC's ministerial council plans to discuss production levels for the second quarter of 1994. Oil prices are fluctuating in the range of $13-$14 a barrel, $7 less than OPEC's target of $21 a barrel. OPEC must decide whether to slash its production ceiling of 24.52 million barrels per day or to keep the same level for the next quarter.

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