Page last updated at 11:12 GMT, Thursday, 4 September 2008 12:12 UK

Opec invites Brazil to join group

Iranian oil field
Iran is one of Opec's 13 members

Iran has invited Brazil to join oil producers' cartel Opec, Brazil's energy and mines minister has said.

The moves comes after Brazil recently announced finding major sources of offshore oil, prompting significant international attention.

Brazil is considering the invite. Its National Energy Policy Council has the final word on whether it wants to join.

While oil prices have fallen from record levels, many analysts say the longer trend remains high prices.

As a member of the oil producers' organisation, Iran can suggest the membership of another country.

Untapped oil

In April, the head of Brazil's National Petroleum Agency said an oil field offshore from Rio de Janeiro's coast could contain 33 billion barrels.

That finding came after state-owned Petrobras said the offshore Tupi field was estimated to hold between five billion and eight billion barrels of untapped light oil.

The discoveries could turn Brazil into a major oil exporter, say analysts.

Slower economic growth has dented demand for oil, pushing prices down to around $110 a barrel from above $147 per barrel reached in July.

Brazil announces new oil reserves
09 Nov 07 |  Business
Huge new oil discovery in Brazil
28 Dec 05 |  Business

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