Tags: OPEC | Output | oil | crude

OPEC Output Hits Highest Since 2008: Reuters Survey

Monday, 30 April 2012 02:18 PM

OPEC output in April has hit its highest since 2008 as extra crude from Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Libya more than compensates for the lowest Iranian supply in two decades ahead of an EU embargo, a Reuters survey found on Monday.

Supply from the 12-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries averaged 31.75 million barrels per day (bpd), up from a revised 31.32 million bpd in March, the survey of sources at oil companies, OPEC officials and analysts found.

As well as cushioning the impact of the looming European Union plan to embargo Iran's crude, the extra oil is filling gaps caused by an unusually large amount of supply outages globally, which have helped support oil prices this year.

"There's plenty of oil in the market," said Paul Tossetti, an analyst at PFC Energy. "But there has been a lot of non-OPEC outages, which have continued to tighten supplies."

OPEC's total is the highest since September 2008, which was shortly before it agreed to a series of supply curbs to combat recession and collapsing demand, based on Reuters surveys.

In April, the biggest increase in OPEC supply came from Iraq as a second new Gulf shipping outlet provided a boost to export capacity. Production topped 3 million bpd and rose by 230,000 bpd from last month.

Saudi Arabian supply edged up in April to 10.0 million bpd, the survey found. Some customers say the kingdom, which has said it wants to see lower oil prices, has been offering them extra crude.

Output continued to recover in Libya after being virtually shut down during the 2011 uprising against Muammar Gaddafi's rule. Supplies also rose from OPEC's two West African members, Angola and Nigeria.

In Iran, which faces the EU ban from July, output fell significantly in April for a second month, according to oil industry sources outside the country.

Supply declined to 3.15 million bpd in April, according to the survey. That would be the lowest output in Iran since it produced 3.088 million bpd in 1990, according to figures from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

In March, Iran's exports posted the first sizeable decline since the EU announced in January its plan to embargo Iran's crude and Washington and Brussels sanctioned Iran's central bank.

© 2018 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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Monday, 30 April 2012 02:18 PM
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