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Tsvetana Paraskova

Tsvetana Paraskova

Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews. 

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Russia’s Oil Exports Climb Despite Its Commitment To Cut Supply

  • Tanker-tracking data monitored by Bloomberg shows Russia’s crude oil exports by sea have been exceeding the country’s targeted export reduction.
  • The four-week average crude oil shipments out of Russia to October 29 was nearly 200,000 bpd higher than the country’s target.
  • Russia has continuously struggled with its pledge to reduce its oil exports by 300,000 bpd through to the end of 2023.

Russia’s crude oil exports by sea have been exceeding the country’s targeted export reductions as part of the OPEC+ pact for weeks, with the most recent week’s observed shipments as high as 360,000 barrels per day (bpd) above target, tanker-tracking data monitored by Bloomberg showed on Tuesday.

In the week to October 29, Russia shipped around 3.64 million bpd of crude oil from its oil export terminals, up by 110,000 compared to the week prior, according to the data reported by Bloomberg’s Julian Lee. 

Higher shipments out of the port of Novorossiysk in the Black Sea contributed to most of the gains in crude flows from Russia in the last week of October and were only partially offset by a lower number of crude oil tankers that left Russia’s ports in the Baltic Sea and on the Pacific.

The four-week average crude oil shipments out of Russia were slightly lower at 3.48 million bpd in the week to October 29, a drop of around 20,000 bpd compared to the four-week average in the four weeks to October 22.

Even this slightly lower 3.48 million bpd export volume for the average of the four weeks to October 29 was nearly 200,000 bpd higher than the exports Russia would have to ideally stick to in order to fulfill its pledge to cut exports by 300,000 bpd, Bloomberg notes.

Russia has never been quite clear about what exports it is cutting and how it calculates those volumes.

Russia’s commitment to reduce its oil exports by 300,000 bpd includes oil products, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said earlier this month in remarks that sowed further confusion about how much oil supply Russia is really withholding from the market.

Russia has pledged to reduce its oil exports by 300,000 bpd until the end of 2023, in a show of solidarity with its OPEC+ partner Saudi Arabia, which is voluntarily reducing its oil production by 1 million bpd until 2023.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com


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  • Mamdouh Salameh on October 31 2023 said:
    Russia always keeps it promises. The fact that its oil exports in the week ending 29 October were 200,000 barrels a day (b/d) higher than tits target could easily be due to a statistical error. It is possible that in the previous weeks its exports were below its target so when one adds the shipments and averages them over a longer period the average will be near or close to its target.

    Another explanation is that despite agreeing to cut its exports by 300,000 b/d until the end of the year, a rise in domestic fuel tax could have led to a decline in domestic demand thus enabling Russia to maintain its exports at a high level despite the cut.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Global Energy Expert

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