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Tsvetana Paraskova

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Saudi Oil Attacks Send OPEC+ Compliance Soaring Past 200%

OPEC and its non-OPEC allies in the production cut deal achieved a compliance rate of more than 200 percent with their cuts in September, mainly due to last month’s attacks on vital oil infrastructure in OPEC’s largest producer Saudi Arabia, sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Monday.

Last month, Saudi Arabia witnessed an unprecedented attack on its oil infrastructure, which knocked 5.7 million bpd - or 5 percent of global oil supply - offline.

Due to this attack, OPEC’s total production slumped by 1.318 million bpd from August to 28.491 million bpd in September, according to the secondary sources in OPEC’s closely-watched Monthly Oil Market Report.

This figure, reported by OPEC last week - is very close to the Platts survey from earlier last week which found that OPEC pumped 28.45 million bpd of crude oil last month, down by 1.48 million bpd from August - the steepest monthly drop in nearly 17 years.

According to OPEC’s secondary sources, production in Saudi Arabia plunged by 1.28 million bpd to 8.564 million bpd in September. The Saudis, however, self-reported to OPEC that production was down by just 660,000 bpd in September from August, at 9.129 million bpd.

Among other members with lower production as per OPEC’s secondary sources, non-compliant Iraq and Nigeria cut some of their overproduction last month but were still off target. Related: Inventory Build Sends Oil Prices Lower

Crude oil production in Iran further declined, by 34,000 bpd to 2.159 million bpd, amid the U.S. sanctions restricting Iranian oil exports. Venezuela’s crude oil production plunged again, by 82,000 bpd to average just 644,000 bpd in September, according to OPEC’s secondary sources.

The largest non-OPEC producer part of the pact, Russia, saw its oil production inch down in September, to 11.25 million bpd from 11.29 million bpd in August, but still above Moscow’s cap under the deal. Russia has vowed that it is still looking to comply with its share of the cuts.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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Leave a comment
  • Mamdouh Salameh on October 14 2019 said:
    The title of this article is misleading and contradictory. It gives the impression that OPEC+' soaring compliance with the production cuts was a deliberate action intended to bolster the oil price when in fact the reduction in OPEC+ production was due to the damage inflicted on Saudi oil production and therefore completely beyond OPEC+ control.

    Moreover, OPEC+ wouldn’t willingly have reduced production since the loss of 5.7 million barrels a day (mbd) from Saudi oil production would have pushed up prices steeply. As it happened, the steep rise in oil prices didn’t last long because of the glut in the market which has been augmented by the trade war between the United States and China from 1.0-1.5 mbd before the war to an estimated 4-5 mbd capable of neutralizing the geopolitical impact of the loss of 5.7 mbd from Saudi production.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Visiting Professor of Energy Economics at ESCP Europe Business School, London
  • Michael BERGER on October 14 2019 said:
    You guys know better then this.

    There's an aggregate target's as well as individual targets.

    If Saudi's production plummeted, others may still have been over their agreed production targets.

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