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  • OPEC Honors Iran’s Petroleum Minister

OPEC Honors Iran’s Petroleum Minister

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) honored Iran’s Minister of Petroleum, Bijan Zangeneh, in a video message for his long presence in Iran’s ministries of Petroleum and Energy during the 181st Ordinary Meeting of the OPEC Conference on Thursday.

The video message recorded and played to honor Zangeneh’s final attendance at the OPEC ministerial meetings during the 181st Ordinary Meeting of the OPEC Conference held via video conference on Thursday.

OPEC Secretary General, Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, said in the video:

“At this historic moment, I would like to take a few minutes of your time to reflect with deep appreciation and a touch of nostalgia on the historic contributions of his Excellency, Bijan Zangeneh of the Islamic Republic of Iran to OPEC during his long and illustrious career.

Indeed, we have a debt of gratitude to pay for his many years of dedicated service of excellence to this organization as head of the Islamic Republic of Iran's delegation to OPEC.

During his tenure as minister of energy from 1988 to 1997, and then as minister of petroleum from 1997 to 2005, and from 2013 to present, he has served his country and this organization with distinction and has displayed both strong leadership, diplomatic expertise, and a truly dignified character. He's a prime example of decency and the embodiment of integrity.

Excellency, Zangeneh, as the longest serving head of delegation to OPEC, you are held in high-esteem amongst your industry peers, and here at the OPEC secretariat. Your Excellency’s historical wealth of knowledge and industry expertise have greatly impacted and enriched the many ministerial meetings, OPEC seminars and industry events in which you have participated.

As the doyen of both the OPEC conference and the OPEC non-OPEC ministerial meetings, Your Excellency’s dignified leadership and unflappable presence have provided a significant stabilizing influence, especially in the most challenging of times over the past decades.

I assure you our successes would not have been what they are without the input of your dedication, sense of teamwork and diplomatic astuteness. We all drank from your reservoir of knowledge and fountain of wisdom.

More recently, OPEC has benefited immensely from your leadership and contributions that help transform the OPEC-non-OPEC declaration of cooperation from a noble vision to a highly effective framework for global energy cooperation.

More recently, OPEC has benefited immensely from your leadership and contributions that help transform the OPEC-non-OPEC declaration of cooperation from a noble vision to a highly effective framework for global energy cooperation. This landmark cooperation continues to have a profound impact on the global oil industry, helping it successfully navigate and overcome major global, such as the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic.

Now, Excellency, as we prepare to commemorate the 60th anniversary of OPEC in September of 2021 in Baghdad, Iraq, I am especially appreciative of the Islamic Republic of Iran's historical contributions, as a founding member of OPEC, and a steadfast commitment to the founding principles of this organization.

Under your Excellency’s able guidance, The Iranian delegation has played a leading role in OPEC affairs over the years, often being recognized for creativity in seeking compromise and finding viable solutions amongst his fellow member countries. On behalf of OPEC, Excellency, we wish you many blessings of long life, good health contentment and continuous successes in all of your future endeavors.”

Meanwhile, Oman’s Minister of Oil and Gas, Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhi, who spoke in the video message, said:

“My dear friend, colleague, Mr. Zangeneh, this is supposed to be a sad day for many of us, but I'm choosing to make it a celebration for you.

I want to celebrate really your contribution to our industry, to your career, to your contribution to your country. And most of all, as far as I'm concerned, your contribution to my own development.

I started walking with you when I was a rookie, a new minister in town and, you have never seized to support me. And, I've taken our discussion as an advice, I've taken our negotiation as an advice and, believe me, throughout the almost quarter of a century that we’ve known each other, you have advised me, you have contributed to my development.

I sincerely thank you. And I want to wish you a fantastic retirement where you are going to enjoy the time of your life. This is the beginning of relaxation. This is your own time for the first time. And I think you should celebrate on what you have achieved.
And you have contributed not only to this organization, OPEC, that have been coming in and out as a guest, but to many of us who rely on exporting our crude oil to the market.


Also, a part of this video message was allocated to Zangeneh’s speech delivered in OPEC meetings and seminars. The video narrator said Bijan Zangeneh is ending his tenure as the petroleum minister as it is the end of a very successful period in Iran’s energy. However, the positive heritage Zangeneh has left for Iran and OPEC will continue for a lone time. Moreover, the narrator noted, “Iran hosted many key OPEC events. Chief among them was the 135th meeting of the OPEC conference, which was held in the ancient city of Isfahan on March 16th, 2005.”

Zangeneh Appreciates OPEC’s Message

Iran’s Minister of Petroleum, Bijan Zangeneh, spoke at the 181st Ordinary Meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ Conference after he received OPEC’s remarks honoring him for his contributions to the cartel. In his remarks, he said:

In the name of Allah

His Excellency Dr. Diamantino Pedro Azevedo, President of the OPEC Conference

Excellencies, the Honorable Heads of theOPEC Delegations

 His Excellency Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo, the OPEC Secretary General

I would like to express my sincere appreciation to our distinguished Secretary-General, HE. Mohammad Barkindo and his able staff for this tasteful and humbling video documentary presentation. I thank you for all the kind words addressed to me.

Dear Friends,

Allow me to share with you, very briefly, my insight about the underlying reason for the success and durability of our Organization.
In my view, OPEC is the only economic organization of the developing countries that directly and significantly impacts and shapes the world economy. OPEC was founded on the pillar of a golden principle. This golden principle was the key for OPEC to achieve unparalleled success in the last 60(sixty) years.

Comprehension and acceptance of the need for cooperation within OPEC along with intra economic competition and even political conflict among OPEC member countries constitute that key golden principle.

Agreeing to cooperate with one another within OPEC to secure national interests with overarching rule of wisdom in relations among OPEC members, despite tremendous ups and downs and major tensions and discords among member countries is the secret key to durability and

success of our Organization in the last 60(sixty) years. In the meantime, we have all scored and benefited from being an OPEC member in the interest of our national development and our own peoples.

During the last 60(sixty) years of OPEC history, complying with this golden principle, OPEC has been instrumental in improving the political relations between its member countries. It is true that some believe petroleum ministers, members of OPEC are, in a sense, the second foreign ministers of their own countries.

Mr. President,

Distinguished Secretary-General


As one of the founding members of OPEC, the policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran has always been centered on promoting cooperation and convergence within OPEC member countries, as well as cooperation with other major oil producing and consuming nations.

My first attendance in the OPEC ministerial conference goes back to 103 (One hundred and third) OPEC Conference in November 1997(ninety nineteen seven), in Jakarta. Since then, global oil market has experienced extensive ups and downs and a wide range of prices from $7 to over $100(hundred) per barrel. Fortunately, OPEC complying with its golden principle, has a successful track record of not only protecting the interests of its member countries, but also of taking wise steps to strengthen market stability, ensure adequate investment for oil production, as well as assuring the consuming nations of timely and sufficient oil supply.

We have 60(sixty) years behind us, and now with the new initiative of OPEC cooperation with a number of other oil producing nations, in the context of OPEC Plus, a new chapter of life has been unfolded for OPEC.

I am confident that with the same wisdom upon which OPEC was founded and charted a rocky territory and reached an undeniable maturity and empowerment, OPEC will continue this journey along with non-OPEC producing countries and in close cooperation with consuming nations.


The Islamic Republic of Iran has been under the most severe unilateral US sanctions, particularly over the last three years. Our oil industry has suffered greatly and was prevented from realizing its home-grown potentials. But, We, Iranians survive and will not bow to bullying. We have maintained a healthy production and a reasonable oil export despite the stated wishes and plans of the former US Administration.


Dear Friends,
At the verge of being 70(seventy) years old, when the new government of President-elect His Excellency, Mr. Raeisi, is about to be formed, I have decided to step aside from official public service and go to retirement.

I ask all friends here and am confident that the same courtesies and cooperation that was accorded me during these long years will be accorded to my successor who will take office in less than two months from today.

Once again, I must say that I am thankful and humbled by this show of support and recognition accorded me today for a life-long public service to my county and to the Organization. Thank you Mr. Secretary-General Barkindo. I also wish to thank all OPEC Secretariat staff and the OPEC family for a memorable journey.

I shall not fail to register my heartfelt thanks and appreciations to all Ministers, past and present, with whom I have worked, particularly all my dear friends Dr. AlRumhi, Prince Abdul Aziz Bin Salman, Mr. Mohammad Arkab, Mr. Tareck El Aissami. Mr…..

I ask and pray to almighty Allah to continue to shower you and your family and friends with blessings of health and success.

God bless you all.

Thank you.

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