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Nigeria’s Forcados Crude Resumes Loadings After Month-Long Halt

Nigerian crude oil exports from the Forcados export terminal restarted on Sunday, a spokesperson for Shell told Reuters on Monday, one month after Shell suspended exports over a potential leak.

On July 12, Shell suspended loadings of Forcados crude oil at the export terminal of the same name after workers saw fumes near the single buoy mooring that was loading crude onto an oil tanker. Repair works began and now the terminal is exporting crude again.  

Before the suspension of the Forcados exports on July 12, Nigeria had planned to export around 220,000 barrels per day (bpd) of the crude grade in July, sources told Reuters at the time.

As a result of the halt in Forcados loadings in July, Nigeria’s crude oil production slumped by 40,000 bpd last month compared to June, marking one of the biggest drops in OPEC output. Saudi Arabia led the declines in crude oil production, due to 968,000 bpd lower output as the Kingdom nearly delivered its promised 1-million-bpd cut last month.

Production in Saudi Arabia, Libya, and Nigeria dropped last month compared to June, while rising production from Iran, Angola, and Iraq offset some of the Saudi reduction, according to secondary sources in OPEC’s Monthly Oil Market Report (MOMR) published last week.

Crude oil production in Nigeria dropped by 12.56% in July to 1.29 million bpd from 1.48 million bpd in June, Business Day has reported, citing data from the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission.

According to the state agency, one of the reasons for the decline was the temporary shutdown of the Forcados terminal, which Shell announced in mid-July.

Earlier this year, the Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission warned that Nigeria is producing 1 million bpd of crude less than it has the capacity to produce. The agency cited a lack of investments, a shortage of funding sources because of the energy transition, and insecurity among the factors driving the situation.

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By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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