By February 16, 2017 Read More →

Southern Iraq oil exports stay lower in Feb after OPEC cut

Iraq oil

Iraq oil minister Jabal al-Luaibi said he was “very happy” with the progress of the OPEC supply cut deal.  AFP phot by Haidar Mohammed Ali.

Iraq oil supply cut share 210,000 b/d

 By Alex Lawler

LONDON, Feb 16 (Reuters) – Iraq oil exports from the country’s southern terminals have edged lower so far in February, according to loading data and an industry source, a sign that OPEC’s second-largest producer is keeping a lid on shipments following a commitment to cut output.

During negotiations on the supply cut by OPEC and non-OPEC producers, Iraq had sought an exemption – leading to scepticism that the country would comply with the accord. The deal stipulates that Iraq cut output by 210,000 barrels per day.

Exports from southern Iraq – the outlet for most of the country’s crude – in the first 15 days of February averaged 3.24 million b/d, according to shipping data tracked by Reuters and by an industry source.

That would be a slight decline from January, when southern exports fell to 3.28 million b/d, two oil executives told Reuters. Iraq said southern shipments were 3.51 million b/d in December, a record high.

The OPEC cut started on Jan. 1. Although it is only mid-February, the export level lends support to comments from Iraqi officials that Baghdad is lowering output.

Iraq’s oil minister, Jabar al-Luaibi, told Reuters in London last month that he was “very happy” with the progress of the output-cutting agreement, and stressed that Baghdad was complying.

Initial signs are that OPEC in January achieved a record rate of more than 90 per cent compliance with the accord.

Although Iraq cut output by 200,000 b/d in January, it has yet to reach the agreement’s target level, putting its compliance below that of other members such as top exporter Saudi Arabia.

It is not possible to draw firm conclusions about production from a few weeks of export data, not least because the deal by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other independent producers applies to output, not exports.

Iraq’s exports can be volatile day-to-day, affected by bad weather and technical snags among other factors.

The bulk of Iraq’s oil is exported via the southern terminals. Smaller amounts are shipped from northern Iraq via Ceyhan in Turkey.

Northern exports have averaged about 600,000 b/d so far in February, data shows, down from well above 600,000 b/d in January. The Kurdistan Regional Government said November exports were 540,000 b/d and has yet to give any 2017 figures.

(Editing by Dale Hudson)

len webber

Posted in: News

Comments are closed.