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A new Reuters survey found that OPEC’s output dropped in October due to production disruptions in Iraq as well as increased compliance to established quotas by the rest of the bloc’s countries.
Total production fell by 80,000 barrels per day this month as compliance rose to 92 percent – up four points from September. Saudi Arabia continued its trend to pump below target, and Venezuelan output fell further as the nation’s economy spirals into a depression.
Brent barrels rose to over $60 a barrel, which is the price that Saudi Aramco executives were aiming to reach before the state-run company’s initial public offering next year.
Following the Kurdistan region’s referendum which Iraq did not recognize, Iraq’s government forces completed in mid-October an operation to seize control of all oil fields that Iraqi state-held North Oil Company operates in the oil-rich Kirkuk region from Kurdish forces. Crude oil from northern Iraq, including from the Kurdistan region, stopped flowing from the oil pipeline between Kirkuk and the Turkish Mediterranean port of Ceyhan early on Monday local time, Bloomberg reported yesterday, citing a port agent.
Next month, the cartel is set to meet at Vienna in order to discuss the future of 1.2 million barrels per day of production cuts. Moscow agreed to cut 300,000 bpd in production in concert with OPEC’s agreement.
“With both the Saudi and Russian leadership in favor of prolonging supply curbs, next month’s OPEC meeting is shaping up to be a non-event,” Stephen Brennock of oil broker PVM told Reuters. “That is unless the oil cartel announces deeper output cuts or provisions for exempted members Libya and Nigeria.”
Libyan output increased by 70,000 barrels this month due to new stable output from the Sharara field – the country’s largest.
By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com
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Zainab Calcuttawala is an American journalist based in Morocco. She completed her undergraduate coursework at the University of Texas at Austin (Hook’em) and reports on…