The European Union has urged oil-producing countries and oil companies to do more to increase oil production in the face of rising gas prices that EU officials say pose a threat to the bloc's economic growth.

In a statement issued Saturday at the end of their two-day meeting in Manchester, England, EU finance ministers urged oil companies to, among other things, increase investment in oil exploration, production and refinement.

EU officials have said higher oil prices in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in the southern United States could cut economic growth across the 12-country euro currency zone from the originally forecast 1.3 percent to as little as one percent.

Oil prices closed at $64.08 a barrel in New York on Friday after hitting an all-time record high of $70.85 on August 30.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.