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Renita Jablonski: It looks Hurricane Gustav spared the Gulf Coast and its oil facilities from any serious damage. That in turn is bringing down the price of oil this morning. Oil is around $108 a barrel — a level not seen since April.
Some analysts think OPEC will cut output if the price continues to slide. But Libya says OPEC’s output is likely to stay the same. Condoleeza Rice will visit the North African country later this week. Here’s Gretchen Wilson with more.
Gretchen Wilson: Many average Libyans haven’t seen the benefits of rising oil profits and booming foreign investment. The country’s leader Moammar Gadaffi now says he’ll give oil revenues directly to the country’s five million people — by early 2009. That could mean a payout of more than $12,000 per person. That’d pump huge resources into the region, says Cornelis van der Waal, an energy analyst from Frost & Sullivan Africa.
Cornelis van der Waal: And hopefully, a lot of that money will not be spent on everyday goods but rather be invested back into the economy creating further job opportunities for the locals, and hopefully have a positive spin in the North African region.
Gadaffi said Libyans could spend their oil check however they want — like on their kids’ education or to start a business.
In Johannesburg, I’m Gretchen Wilson for Marketplace.
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