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Kazakhstan’s Oil Output To Return To Pre-Unrest Level Within Days

Kazakhstan’s daily oil production is expected to return to pre-unrest levels by the end of this week, as Chevron has started to gradually restore the curtailed output, advanced oil data analytics provider OilX says.

The impact of the disruptions due to the unrest in OPEC+ producer Kazakhstan is estimated at 73,000 barrels per day (bpd), said OilX, which expects production to gradually increase by January 14 to the levels seen before January 6.

Protests erupted in Kazakhstan early last week over higher fuel prices. The government had lifted price controls on liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), which many Kazakhs use to fuel their LPG-converted vehicles because it’s cheaper than gasoline. The rise in fuel prices also resulted in a surge in consumer goods. The protests continued even after the government resigned to appease the protesters.

More than 160 people were killed in Kazakhstan in one week of unrest during protests that affected production at the country’s largest oilfield, Tengiz, operated by Chevron.

The U.S. supermajor said on Sunday that production at the oilfield was gradually being restored to its usual volumes, following several days of curtailed output amid logistics disruptions due to contractors supporting the protests.

On Thursday, Chevron had said that “TCO production operations continue, however, there has been a temporary adjustment to output due to logistics.”

Tengizchevroil, or TCO, the joint venture pumping oil at Tengiz, produces around 700,000 barrels per day out of Kazakhstan’s total crude oil production of some 1.6 million bpd.  

As Kazakhstan was plunged into protests, with a shoot-to-kill order from President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, the unrest raised concerns over the security of supply from the OPEC+ producer and contributed to the 5-percent rise in oil prices in the first week of this year.

On Tuesday, Tokayev said that the Russia-led alliance troops would start withdrawing in two days, having successfully completed their mission to stabilize the country.  

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By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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