OPEC celebrates 50th anniversary

08:29, March 18, 2010      

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The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), headquartered in Austrian capital city Vienna, performed a ceremony on Wednesday at its new headquarters, celebrating its 50th anniversary.

Attending the 156th OPEC meeting, Oil ministers of all OPEC member countries, representatives of international institutions in Vienna, such as the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) also joined the day' s celebration.

Michael Spindelegger, foreign minister of Austria, was invited to attend the ceremony and give a speech. He pointed out that the stability of global energy market has become the focus of world attention, where OPEC has played an important role. He also ensured, Austria will continue to assist OPEC and its activities in Vienna.

Alfredo Pinto, chairman of the OPEC conference, reviewed the developing history of OPEC in his speech. He emphasized that OPEC has been committed to level off a global crude oil market for years and will continue to make efforts to this end.

Austria Post issued a stamp on Wednesday to mark the 50th anniversary of OPEC.

On September 10, 1960, representatives of Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela held the Baghdad Conference, deciding to make an alliance against Western oil companies to maintain their oil revenues. On September 14, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries was created.

Along with the seven later joined states, Algeria, United Arab Emirates, Ecuador, Gabon, Qatar, Libya and Nigeria, OPEC has 12 member countries at present, whose output of crude oil accounts 40 percent of the world production.

The tenet of OPEC is to coordinate and unite oil policies of its member countries, to ensure the interests of every member country but also common interests as a whole. Based on this, OPEC has been committed to maintaining the stability and prosperity of the oil market since its establishment, implementing a quota system of crude oil production, ensuring the interests of oil producers as well as consumers.

OPEC was headquartered in Geneva at the beginning of its founding. It moved to Vienna in 1965, where it was housed in a small, three-storied house along the Donau canal.

The government of Austria entered into an agreement with OPEC on September 12, 2009, providing new office building to OPEC. The 156th OPEC Meeting was the first formal activity performed after the formal opening of the new official building.

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