[OIL PRICES] The prices must be controlled. Gordon Brown

The British Primier Minister Gordon Brown blamed global factors, especially record oil prices, for the economic slowdown and rising inflation in Britain during a series of major interviews Thursday.

Speaking on BBC Radio Four's Today programme, Brown called for oil prices to be controlled and said that pressure must be put on OPEC to increase production.

OPEC was responsible for about 40 percent of the world's production and it is clear they should be raising their targets, he later said at his monthly press conference. The British premier said that he wanted OPEC to consider increasing their quotas, arguing that he believed its members had the capacity to do so.

They need to act to convince people demand can be met, he told domestic and foreign journalists. The supply of oil to meet demand was important not just now but in the future.

Brown also said that the rest of the international community need also to look at what can be done to bring down record oil prices of over 120 dollars per barrels, mentioning that there were other causes for the spike like geopolitics and speculators.

Under pressure from criticism about his own performance, the prime minister carried out four substantial interviews Thursday morning as well as hold his press conference at midday.

This was in addition to answering parliamentary questions on Wednesday. Defending questions on whether he would resign, he insisted that he had the best experience, including 10 years as Chancellor of the Exchequer, to carry on the job.

The reason the economy is going wrong is "international factors that we have had to deal with and I am probably best placed to deal with these issues because of what I know about dealing with other countries on oil and other issues," Brown said.

"Of course, there are many people that can take over, but I think I can help steer this economy through difficult times and make sure we do the best by Britain in difficult world circumstances," he told the BBC.

Source: Islamic Republic News Agency

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