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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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What’s Behind The Spike In OPEC Oil Production?

OPEC’s crude oil production rebounded in October from multi-year-lows in September after top producer Saudi Arabia managed to recover supply lost in the mid-September attacks, more than offsetting unexpected production losses elsewhere in the group, the monthly Reuters survey showed.

OPEC’s oil production jumped by 690,000 bpd from September to 29.59 million bpd in October, as the Saudis saw their production surge by 850,000 bpd, to 9.9 million bpd, according to the Reuters survey of sources at oil companies, OPEC, consultants, and ship tracking data.

Despite the boost in October production, Saudi Arabia is still overcomplying with its share of the cuts, to the tune of around 400,000 bpd. The Saudi cap under the OPEC+ deal is 10.311 million bpd.

According to the Reuters survey, the Saudis are now pumping as much oil as they did before the unprecedented attack on its oil infrastructure in mid-September, 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.

For October, the restored Saudi production more than offset the loss of supply from Ecuador, whose oil production and exports were disrupted due to massive protests around the country, sparked by a government decision to eliminate fuel subsidies—a decision on which President Lenin Moreno later backtracked. Related: The Worst Oil Trades Ever Made

Repeatedly non-compliant OPEC members Iraq and Nigeria saw their production drop in October, but they were still producing above their quotas, even after Nigeria received a higher cap from OPEC, the Reuters survey found.

Crisis-stricken Venezuela was a surprise in the survey, showing a production increase to 650,000 bpd in October from 600,000 bpd in September, while sources told Reuters that the South American country’s oil exports also rose.

OPEC will release official production figures for October in its monthly report on November 14.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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