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Iran, Saudi Arabia Play Down Hopes Of Oil Deal This Week

Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh

Iran and Saudi Arabia played down hopes of reaching a deal to bolster oil prices by freezing production this week in a meeting in Algeria.

Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said an informal gathering of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on September 28 is "just a consultation meeting."

Zanganeh, speaking in Algiers at a meeting of oil producing countries, said "if there is a decision, it should be taken at the next (OPEC) meeting in Vienna in November."

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih also told reporters that the meeting was merely a chance to "consult with everyone else."

Iran has insisted that it will not limit its output until it has raised its production to the level before international sanctions were imposed against Tehran over its nuclear program.

Russia and the Gulf states have been talking to Iran in a bid to rescue a deal.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP