OPEC Oil Supply Reaches Lowest in Four Years

Published March 3rd, 2019 - 08:22 GMT
OPEC Oil Supply Reaches Lowest in Four Years. (Shutterstock)
OPEC Oil Supply Reaches Lowest in Four Years. (Shutterstock)

OPEC oil supply fell to a four-year low in February, a Reuters survey found, as top exporter Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies over-delivered on the group's supply pact while Venezuelan output registered a further involuntary decline.

The 14 OPEC members pumped 30.68 million barrels per day (bpd) in February, the survey showed on Friday, the lowest OPEC total since 2015, according to Reuters surveys.

OPEC, Russia and other non-members -- an alliance known as OPEC+ -- agreed to reduce supply by 1.2 million bpd. OPEC's share is 800,000 bpd, to be delivered by 11 members – all except Iran, Libya and Venezuela, which are exempt from cuts.

In February, the 11 OPEC members bound by the deal achieved 101 percent of pledged cuts, the survey found, up from 70 percent in January. Among exempt producers, Venezuelan supply fell, while Iran managed to boost exports despite also being subject to US sanctions.

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The latest OPEC+ deal came just months after the group agreed to pump more oil, which in turn partially unwound their original supply-limiting accord that took effect in 2017.

Oil has risen to $66 a barrel after a dip below $50 in December, boosted by lower Saudi output, involuntary curbs in other OPEC countries and the prospect of lower supply from Venezuela after US President Donald Trump imposed sanctions on its oil industry. 

Russia's energy minister Alexander Novak said on Friday that it was too early to say if the global deal to cut oil production between OPEC and other large oil producers would be extended.

"There is no answer to this question now," Novak told reporters. "It is too early because only two months have passed."

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