OPEC oil output was rising in March as higher supply from Iran after the lifting of sanctions and near-record exports from southern Iraq offset maintenance and outages in smaller producers, Reuters informed based on a survey it recently conducted.
OPEC supply rose to 32.47mb/d in March, up from 32.37mb/d in February, according to the survey, based on shipping data and information from sources at oil companies, OPEC and consultants.
The biggest rise came from Iran with an output increase by 230,000b/d since December. Angolan exports also rose.
In countries where output has fallen, the drop was the result of outages and maintenance rather than voluntary restraint.
Output declined in the UAE, where work on oilfields that produce Murban crude is curbing production. The maintenance will not be completed until April. Nigeria saw a decline due to a whole month of disruption to the Forcados crude stream operated by Royal Dutch Shell’s local venture. Libyan output, already at a fraction of rates seen before the country’s civil war, fell due to a power outage. Supply in Venezuela also edged lower.
According to Gulf Times, Saudi Arabia kept output steady compared with February, sources in the survey said. Saudi production was assessed at 10.18mb/d in March versus 10.20mb/d in February.
World major producers are meeting on April 17th in Qatar to discuss the oil output freeze plan to support prices, which hit a 12-year low near $27 a barrel in January but have since recovered to $40.