UAE Oil Minister: OPEC to Consider All Options

PEC will examine all options when its ministers meet in February, the UAE oil minister said on Monday, adding that there was a disconnect between market fundamentals and high oil prices.

Mohammed al-Hamli declined to comment on his meeting earlier on Monday with visiting U.S. Energy Secretary Sam Bodman or on what he expects OPEC to decide at the meeting, which is due to consider output policy.

"OPEC will meet in February and we will look then at all the options," Hamli told reporters in Abu Dhabi. "There is a disconnect between fundamentals and the price."

Bodman urged top exporter Saudi Arabia and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries on Saturday to raise supply on a visit to the kingdom.

His made the appeal just days after U.S. President George W. Bush asked the group for more oil on a separate visit to Riyadh, and less than two weeks before OPEC's next meeting on Feb. 1.

Bodman has said that the challenges caused by high oil prices were posing a serious problem for the United States and developing economies.

But OPEC exporters, which have repeatedly said that the high oil prices were a result of speculation and geopolitics, appeared to dismiss his call.

OPEC is keeping a close eye on the market and stood ready to pump more when needed, OPEC Secretary-General Abdullah al-Badri said in remarks published on Saturday.

Qatar's Oil Minister Abdullah al-Attiyah said on Sunday that the oil market was well supplied and there was no need for the producer group to boost output at its Feb. 1 meeting.