Iran has gained new chances to win the post of the OPEC secretary general as Saudi Arabia's Majid al-Moneef withdrew his candidacy, the Fars News Agency reported.
Al-Moneef, who formerly served as Saudi Arabia's governor to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and as a senior economic adviser to Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi, had been vying for the producer group's top administrative position against candidates from Iran and Iraq. He dropped out of the contest on Monday.
In October 2012, Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said that all the necessary measures will be taken to support ex-oil minister Gholamhossein Nozari to win the secretary general post in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
The Shana News Agency quoted him as saying that Iran is a founding member as well as an influential member of the organization and it is natural for it to win the post.
The OPEC's current Libyan secretary general, Abdallah el-Badri, has been in the position for two terms since 2007.
Although Iran is the OPEC's second major producer, the only Iranian secretary general has been Mr Foad Rohani, who held the post between 1961 and 1964.
Iran has attempted several times to take OPEC general secretary post during last 30 years by nominating Hadi Nejad-Hosseinian and Hossein Kazemi Ardabili, but could not succeed.
Iran announced on June 2 that it will introduce a nominee for the post of secretary general of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), but a day later Iraqi deputy Prime Minister Hussain al-Shahristani said that Iran will support Samir Ghazban, the Iraqi nominee for the position.
OPEC's current secretary-general, Abdalla el-Badri of Libya, will complete his second three-year term at the end of this year.
OPEC ministers will probably consider the nominations at their June 14 meeting at the organization's Vienna headquarters.
OPEC's members are Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela.
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