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Venezuelan Output Rises to 850,000 Bpd Amid Sanctions Relaxation

Working towards production of 1 million barrels of oil per day in the wake of Washington’s easing of sanctions, Venezuelan Oil Ministry officials said on Wednesday that output had reached 850,000 bpd and the country was on its way to recovering market share, Reuters reports. 

The production volume reached as of the Venezuelan Oil Ministry’s statement on Wednesday is up from October output of 786,000 bpd. 

Speaking to journalists on the sidelines of a Caracas oil conference, Reuters cited Venezuela’s deputy oil minister, Erick Perez, as saying that recovery was on track to improve, emphasizing the hoped-for start of natural gas exports from the Dragon field offshore gas project with Trinidad and Tobago. Venezuela, home to the world’s largest oil reserves,  is currently negotiating with the government of Trinidad for the Dragan field, which would be in cooperation with Shell. 

According to Forbes, oil traders have been “rushing” to buy Venezuelan crude since Washington temporarily eased sanctions on October 18, further bolstering the country’s outlook with the renewal on November 16 of new licenses for oil services firms. Four licenses for oilfield services firms to maintain their existing Venezuela assets were extended through May 16, 2024, leading to negotiations with international providers to help ramp up production. 

Only weeks after Washington lifted sanctions in October, Oilprice.com reported that commodity trading giants were getting back in the game quickly, striking deals to buy crude from intermediaries approved by Venezuela’s state-owned oil company PDVSA. Vitol Group, the world’s largest independent oil trader, has hired a supertanker to load oil from Venezuela, lists of ship charters compiled by Bloomberg showed last week. The Gustavia S, booked for $11 million, is set to load Venezuelan oil later in November or in early December.  

By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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