Russian October oil output inched up to 10.04 million barrels per day from already record-high 10.01 million bpd in September, while the country’s October daily gas output rose by 15.8 per cent to 1.76 billion cubic metres from 1.52 bcm in the previous month.

Russia held its lead as the world’s top oil producer, posting a new post-Soviet high of more than 10 million barrels per day of crude extracted in October, Energy Ministry data released yesterday showed.

Russian October oil output inched up to 10.04 million barrels per day from already record-high 10.01 million bpd in September, while the country’s October daily gas output rose by 15.8 per cent to 1.76 billion cubic metres from 1.52 bcm in the previous month.

The continued rise in output of oil, which accounts for the bulk of Moscow’s budget, was due to a new field on stream and a more benign tax regime introduced to tackle falling production.

Russia’s former monthly records for oil production were the 9.97 million bpd in August 2009 and 9.93 million bpd achieved in October 2007.

Saudi Arabia, historically the leading producer and with the world’s biggest oil reserves, has restricted its output in line with Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries output targets and pumped about 8 million bpd in October.

Russian crude output fell last year for the for the first time in a decade, to 488.105 million tonnes. The Energy Ministry has forecast that production will rise to reach more than 490 million tonnes.

Daily crude extraction rose 1.1 per cent for the nine months to 410.3 million tonnes.

Russia is reaping the benefit of higher oil prices, which, though down from last-year’s all-time high of $147 (Dh539.50) per barrel, have risen some 80 per cent so far this year to almost $80.

October output from Gazprom, the world’s largest natural gas producer, was 1.45 bcm per day.

(Reuters & Gulf News)