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Oil Prices Rally As OPEC+ Maintains Its Production Policy

The Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) of the OPEC+ group wrapped up their monthly meeting on Wednesday in record time and, as widely expected, did not make any recommendation about changing the oil production levels of the alliance.

The JMMC meeting this month was more of a formality rather than disagreements and bargaining like the previous meeting since OPEC+ decided in January how it would proceed with the production cuts for February and March.  

This month, the OPEC+ alliance is easing its production cuts by just 75,000 barrels per day (bpd)—of which 65,000 bpd will be given to Russia and another 10,000 bpd to Kazakhstan. In March, Russia and Kazakhstan are set to boost their oil production by another 65,000 bpd and 10,000 bpd, respectively. All other members of the pact are keeping their production levels from January. And of course, OPEC’s top producer, Saudi Arabia, is cutting its production by an additional 1 million bpd beyond its quota this month and next.

So this month’s JMMC meeting only took stock of the oil market situation and the compensation schedules for those producers who haven’t fully complied with the cuts since the deal was enacted in May 2020.

Related: A Glimmer Of Hope For Oil Markets

Since the start of the pact, countries have compensated a total of 1 million bpd to make up for previously overproduced volumes, thus achieving 99 percent of the supply adjustment commitments, the JMMC ministers said, Amena Bakr, Deputy Bureau Chief and Chief Opec Correspondent at Energy Intelligence, tweeted.

Those producers who still need to compensate for over-production have to submit their schedules by February 15, Bakr said.

Today’s meeting noted that an acceleration of vaccinations could spur a faster global growth recovery in the latter half of 2021, Energy Intelligence’s Bakr said.  

The next JMMC meeting will be held on March 3, and this is where discussions are expected to heat up again as the OPEC+ group will have to decide on the production levels for April, and possibly beyond.   

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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