Iran to OPEC: Stop Oil Sales in Dollars

April 6, 2008

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is urging OPEC members to form a joint bank and stop pricing oil trades in U.S. dollars.

According to the Iranian government's Web site, Ahmadinejad told OPEC Secretary General Abdalla Salem el-Badri the cartel "should establish a joint bank as well as having joint currency."

Oil is priced in U.S. dollars on the world market, and the currency's depreciation has concerned producers because it has contributed to rising crude prices and eroded the value of their dollar reserves.

Iran has repeatedly urged OPEC members to shift sales away from dollar. But Iran's proposal to trade oil in a basket of currencies is not supported by enough OPEC members, which include staunch U.S. allies such as leading producer Saudi Arabia.

         

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad listens to Secretary-General of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Abdalla Salem el-Badri, left, during their meeting in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, April 6, 2008.