BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) -- In an apparent attempt to grab the initiative from OPEC, senior Oil Ministry officials said Saturday that Iraq will boost exports by about 700,000 barrels a day in the coming few weeks.
Word of the plan to increase exports from 1.6 million barrels a day to at least 2.3 million barrels a day comes as major oil producers are gathering in Vienna to review output levels.
It is not clear what impact Iraq's move will have on the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries decisions Monday.
Ministry officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, did not hide their resentment of what they described as a U.S. policy of ''muscle-twisting'' to push OPEC to increase output.
Iran's oil minister reiterated that appeal Saturday, urging the cartel not to be intimidated by Washington.
Oil revenues are almost Iraq's sole source of hard cash.
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