OPEC raises crude out­put

The Pak Banker - - 6BUSINESS -

OPEC boosted its crude pro­duc­tion to the high­est in three months in Fe­bru­ary led by in­creased out­put from Saudi Arabia and Iraq.

The Or­ga­ni­za­tion of Pe­tro­leum Ex­port­ing Coun­tries pumped 30.31 mil­lion bar­rels a day last month, the pro­ducer group said in its monthly oil mar­ket report. That’s up from 30.24 mil­lion in Jan­uary and is the most since Novem­ber, ac­cord­ing to OPEC es­ti­mates based on sec­ondary sources. U.S. sup­plies will rise to the most in al­most three decades in 2013, OPEC es­ti­mated.

Brent crude prices have fallen 1 per­cent this year on re­newed con­cern that the Euro­pean debt cri­sis will crimp global growth and de­press oil de­mand. The North Sea grade traded near $110 a bar­rel to­day on the ICE Fu­tures Europe ex­change in Lon­don. OPEC’s 12 mem­bers kept their col­lec­tive out­put tar­get of 30 mil­lion bar­rels a day un­changed at their last meet­ing in De­cem­ber.

Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest crude ex­porter, in­creased out­put to 9.12 mil­lion bar­rels a day in Fe­bru­ary from 9.08 mil­lion the pre­vi­ous month, OPEC said. The king­dom said in its di­rect com­mu­ni­ca­tion with the group that it pumped 9.15 mil­lion.

Ira­nian pro­duc­tion in Fe­bru­ary was un­changed at 2.7 mil­lion bar­rels a day, OPEC said. The coun­try’s own es­ti­mate was 3.7 mil­lion, which would put it as the sec­ond-big­gest pro­ducer. US sup­plies are forecast to in­crease 580,000 bar­rels a day this year to av­er­age 10.59 mil­lion bar­rels a day, which would be the most since 1985.

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