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'Egypt unrest behind oil price hike'
Tue, 01 Feb 2011 13:48:05 GMT
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Iran's OPEC governor Mohammad Ali Khatibi has cited Egypt's political turmoil and the weakening dollar as the main reasons behind the surge in oil prices.

Oil prices have climbed to above $100 per barrel for the first time in two years as concerns grow over a disruption of crude flows through Egypt's Suez Canal.

Although Egypt is not among the main crude oil exporting countries, more than two million barrels of oil are transferred to the Mediterranean Sea through Suez Canal on a daily basis, Iran's governor at the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said on Tuesday.

The Iranian official reiterated that any halt in the movement of oil tankers in Suez international waterway in Egypt would increase the oil prices in world markets, Mehr News Agency reported on Tuesday.

He added that the existing price surge is not at all affected by the supply and demand factor.

Meanwhile, OPEC Secretary General Abdalla Salem el-Badri warned that the energy market would “need to act” in the event of a crude delivery disruption through the Suez Canal.

Egypt's massive uprising entered its eighth day on Tuesday as hundreds of thousands of people continue protests against the incumbent President Hosni Mubarak.

The Egyptian protestors are demanding the resignation of Mubarak, who has been ruling the North African state since 1981.

Mubarak has started reshuffling his cabinet, but his efforts to sustain his government has failed to quell the outrage.

The bloody uprising across Egypt has claimed the lives of more than 150 people and injured thousands more.

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