OPEC production up in August as Iraqi output tops one million bpd
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)'s eleven members pumped an average 26.87 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude in August, up a net 270,000 bpd on July's 26.6 million bpd, a Platts survey showed.
The increase in overall production was largely the result of a 350,000 bpd output boost from Iraq, whose production climbed above the one million bpd mark for the first time since the US-led war earlier this year.
Excluding Iraq, however, production from the ten members with quotas fell by 80,000 bpd to 25.84 million bpd from 25.92-million bpd in July. The OPEC-10 exceeded their 25.4 million bpd ceiling by 440,000 bpd. Indonesia underproduced its quota by 317,000 bpd and Venezuela underproduced its quota by 363,000 bpd. But these losses were more than made up by the other members, notably Saudi Arabia which exceeded its OPEC quota 394,000 bpd although its actual production fell by 10,000 bpd over the month from 8.66 million bpd in July to 8.65 million bpd in August.
"What's noteworthy about these numbers is that even in a time of high prices, OPEC sees a different world," said global director of oil at Platts, John Kingston. "Just this week, the International Energy Agency said its projections for the amount of OPEC oil that is going to be needed the rest of this year, and next year, is actually going to decline from earlier projections. OPEC sees that, and sees the gradual increase in Iraqi output, and given that combination, it's easy to see why the group has no plans to increase output at its coming meeting, despite the calls by many leaders for the group to do so."
Output increases totaling 400,000 bpd, including Iraq's 350,000 bpd, were partly offset by 130,000 bpd in reductions. The biggest single cut came from Kuwait, whose output dropped by 60,000 bpd to 2.13 million bpd in August. Iranian production fell from 3.79 million bpd in July to 3.76 million bpd in August.
Apart from Iraq, the only increases month-on-month came from Nigeria and Qatar, which boosted output by 10,000 bpd each to 2.16 million bpd in the case of Nigeria and 740,000 bpd in the case of Qatar. United Arab Emirates (UAE) production rose from 2.24 million bpd in July to 2.27-million bpd in August.
Senior Iraqi oil officials said in Dubai this week that Iraq's output capacity currently stood at around two million bpd but that sabotage on both the main export pipeline from Kirkuk to Turkish Mediterranean port Ceyhan and on feeder lines linking into the main pipeline has resulted in roughly half of the 500,000 bpd of northern crude production being reinjected. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)