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Ahmadinejad Most Likely to Preside over Next OPEC Meeting

Service : Economy
TEHRAN, May 18 (ICANA) – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has taken the responsibility to oversee the country's oil ministry after its merger with the energy ministry, will most likely represent Iran in the next OPEC meeting scheduled for June 8 in Vienna, his senior aide announced on Wednesday.
Wednesday, May 18, 2011 7:01:35 PM
Ahmadinejad Most Likely to Preside over Next OPEC Meeting

After the recent agreement between the Iranian government and parliament on the merger of the oil and energy ministries, "the president has accepted the responsibility to take care of it (the oil ministry) and he himself will attend the meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)," Iranian Vice-President for Parliamentary Affairs Mohammad Reza Mir-Tajeddini told reporters on Wednesday.

"Definitely the issue will promote Iran's position at the OPEC," he underlined.

Iran, OPEC's second largest crude exporter, currently holds the presidency of the cartel, a position it is holding for the first time since the 1979 Islamic revolution.

Earlier this week, Ahmadinejad said he has temporarily assumed the duties of the oil ministry as the cabinet is experiencing mergers of several ministries.

"For now, I myself am the caretaker of the oil ministry," Ahmadinejad said in a televised speech late Sunday.

On Saturday, Ahmadinejad dismissed oil minister Massoud Mir-Kazzemi, alongside two other ministers, whose portfolios are expected to be merged with other departments as part of a cabinet streamlining.

Then on Sunday, he appointed caretakers for the industry and social affairs ministries, but did not name anyone for the oil ministry which was yet to be officially integrated with the energy portfolio.

His decision to take charge of Iran's most-strategic sector came shortly before the 159th OPEC meeting, where the oil producers are represented by their ministers.

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