Japan Finance ministers from the Group of Eight industrialized nations urged oil producers Saturday to boost output to help stabilize record-high oil and food prices, calling the situation a serious threat to global economic growth.
The world economy now faces "headwinds" because of the recent rise in prices, the G-8 ministers said in a joint statement at the conclusion of two days of talks in Osaka in western Japan.
"Elevated commodity prices, especially of oil and food, pose a serious challenge to stable growth worldwide, have serious implications for the most vulnerable and may increase global inflationary pressure," the statement said.
The fundamental factor driving oil prices is the imbalance between rising global demand and supply constraints, the ministers said. They added that geopolitical and financial factors also play a role - a reflection of some ministers' view that speculative trading in oil markets is pushing up prices.