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OPEC Summit: "Caracas Declaration"

Solemn Declaration of the Second Summit of Heads of State and Government of OPEC member countries

"Caracas Declaration"

We, the Heads of State and Government of Member Countries of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), having, decided to hold our second Summit in furtherance of our co-operation and to give continuity to the spirit of solidarity and unity of our first Summit, which was held in Algiers in 1975, and cognisant of the sovereignty of Member Countries over their natural resources, and their obligation to advance the development of their peoples, have accepted the invitation extended by HE the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez Frías, to meet in Caracas from 27 al to 28" September, 2000.

Noting, that oil has become the main source of energy during the last century, thus contributing significantly to world economic, social, technological and scientific development;
Recognising

 the strategic importance of oil as an energy source for mankind;

 the contribution of Member Countries to world economic prosperity through the provision of oil;

 the vital role of oil resources in our national economies;
and

Taking into consideration the rapid pace of change in economic, political, technological, and environmental developments, and the challenges and opportunities created by globalisation and liberalisation;

Resolve

1. To reaffirm the principles and objectives of our Organization as stated in its Statute 40 years ago. In doing so, to aim at the preservation and the enhancement of the role oil would play in meeting future world energy demand.

2. To protect the interests of OPEC Member Countries, both individually and collectively, through suitable strategies and policies designed to optimise the overall economic benefits that can be derived from the utilisation of their vast natural resources.

3. To express our firm commitment, as key participants in the global oil market, to continue providing adequate, timely and secure supplies of oil to consumers at fair and stable prices; and to emphasise the strona, link between the security of supply and the security and transparency of world oil demand.

4. To develop oil pricing policies that are remunerative, stable and competitive with other energy sources, in conjunction with a production policy that ensures a fair share for OPEC in the world oil supply. Such policies are to contribute to market stability and sustainable growth of the world economy.

5. To continuously seek new ways and means for timely and effective co-ordination among OPEC Member Countries, so as to achieve their medium and long-term objectives.

6. To enhance existing, and build new, capabilities and skills within OPEC in order to ensure that the Organization is able to adapt to change, including globalisation and technological advances, and to maintain an effective participation in intenational fora.

7. To promote mutually beneficial co-operation among OPEC National Oil Companies, and between them and the international petroleum industry.

8. To strengthen co-operation on a regular basis between OPEC and other oil exporting countries to achieve market stability.

9. To actively seek new and effective channels of dialogue between oil producers and consumers, for the purpose of market stability, transparency and sustainable growth of the world economy. In this regard, ¡t is anticipated that the 7th International Energy Forum, to be held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, during the period from 17" to 19th November, 2000, will be an excellent opportunity for such dialogue, to which consuming countries are invited to participate at the highest level.

10. To assert OPEC's association with the universal concern for the well-being, of the global environment, and its readiness to continue to participate effectively in the global environmental debate and negotiations, including the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, to ensure a balanced and comprehensive outcome, taking into account the principle of common but differentiated responsibility, and to urge countries listed in Annex I of the UNFCCC to implement policies and measures to minimise the adverse social and economic impacts of their response measures on the countries whose economies are highly dependent on the production and export of fossil fuels.

11. To call for the use of both oil and gas in circumstances where they can be substituted for other fuels which are recognised as being,' damaging to the global environment.

12. To emphasise that economic and social development and the eradication of poverty should be the overriding global priority. To this end, OPEC will continue its historic record of taking the issues of the Developing Countries into full, consideration, inter alia, through their individual aid programmes as well as through the OPEC Fund for International Development and the International Fund for Agricultural Development; and urges the industrialised countries to recognise that the biggest environmental tragedy facing the globe is human poverty.

13. To note, with concern, that the debt levels of many Developing Countries have become unsustainable. We, therefore, call for substantive effort for debt reduction initiatives by the international donor community, including the urgent fulfillment of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative.

14. To call on the consuming countries to adopt fair and equitable treatment of oil in world energy markets by ensuring that their environmental, fiscal, energy and trade policies do not discriminate against oil, thereby helping to achieve global sustainable development.

15. To express the concern that taxation on petroleum products forms the largest component of the final price to the consumers in the major consuming countries, and call upon them to reconsider their policies with the aim of alleviating this tax burden for the benefit of the consumers, just and equitable terms of trade between developing and developed countries, and for the sustainable growth of the world economy.

16. To boost efforts and programmes to diversify our economies, placing greater emphasis on technological innovation, to which end extemal and internal barriers to diversification need to be anticipated, identified and removed. Industrialised countries and relevant international organizations are called upon to collaborate towards the achievement of this goal, cognisant of the mutual benefits which will be realised.

17. To acknowledge the vital role of in-depth scientific and technical research, to recommend establishing links among the research centres in the Member Countries to aid the OPEC decision-making process, and to consider ways and means in which the research activities of our Organization could be strengthened, including exploring the possibility of establishing, a research institute or university.

18. To instruct our Finance Ministers to study ways and means of enhancing financial co-operation between OPEC Member Countries.

19. To acknowledge the diversity and cultural wealth of our peoples, heirs to a legacy of thousands of years, and to promote enhanced cultural interaction among OPEC Member Countries, in order to strengthen their historical links. This would help broaden dialogue on matters of common interest.

20. To institutionalise the OPEC Summit of Heads of State and Government, to take place at regular intervals to be decided after consultation among, Member Countries, with the aim of enhancing, the ability of our Organization to extend the numerous successes which it has achieved in the first 40 years of its rich and remarkable history into the 21st century.

ENDS

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