Iran has no plans to freeze oil exports, official says ahead of OPEC meeting

According to Iran’s Deputy Oil Minister Rokneddin Javadi, the country had no plans to freeze its output as the country tried to raise its crude exports to pre-sanctions levels.

According to Mr. Javadi, Iran’s current crude oil exports, excluding gas condensates touched 2m barrels per day (bpd) and that its crude oil export capacity would reach 2.2m barrels by the middle of summer.

Separately, a meeting between OPEC and non-OPEC producers would take place on 2 June 2016 to plan on freezing output to shore up crude oil prices.

Source: Reuters

Kuwait to increase oil production by 44% by 2020

According to a senior official from state-owned Kuwait Petroleum Corp, the company plans to ramp up its production by c.44% to 4bn barrels a day by 2020.

The company has also planned to tender certain new E&P projects in the Persian Gulf and ramp up local production capacities.

According to OPEC, Kuwait exported most of its oil: an average of 2m barrels per day in 2015. During April 2016, a quarter of its oil was exported to China. Further, Kuwait was keen on expanding its exports to South Korea as it sought contracts on the country’s energy projects.

Source: OilPrice

Oil prices rise on expectation that producers will agree to freeze output

Oil prices rose in trading in Asia on Wednesday on rising expectations that producing nations would agree on freezing their output amid global oversupply.

Expectations rose after The Kuwaiti governor for the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Nawal Al-Fuzaia, stated on Tuesday that there were positive indications an agreement would be reached during an OPEC meeting scheduled in Qatar on 17 April 2016.

Front month U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures traded at $36.74 per barrel, up 2.3% percent from their last settlement price. International Brent futures were up 1.7% at $38.50 a barrel.

An initial freeze on output was agreed to in February, which has helped oil prices rise to almost $38 a barrel from a 12-year low close to $27 in January.

However, prices have continued to decline recently as doubts persist whether a wider deal would be reached, largely because Iran has not shown any indication of slowing its production after crippling sanctions against it were lifted in January.

Source: Reuters

Inconclusive over production output, crude stays at lows

With barely a week passing by since top crude oil producers discussed the possibility of freezing output to prop up crude oil prices, Saudi Arabia has already ruled out a production cut. Saudi Arabia’s oil minister Ali al-Naimi stated that the co-ordinated production cuts would not fructify as many producing nations were not willing to do so.

It is also known that Iran has already ruled out freezing output. Non-OPEC member Russia has so far agreed to reducing its supply.

Iran’s oil minister Bijan Zagahneh was quoted as describing the move as a “joke”. His comments came as nations had asked Iran to restrict output to 1m barrels a day but increased theirs to about 10m barrels for export.

This sort of a disagreement continues to keep WTI Crude at $31.48 (NYMEX) and Brent Crude at $32.95 a barrel.

Source: Reuters

Rig count in the US touches December 2009 lows: Baker Hughes

According to Baker Hughes Inc.,  the number of operational oil rigs in the United States declined to lows last observed in December 2009, a clear sign of the effect of plunging crude oil prices.

For the week ending 19 February 2016, operators shut 26 rigs, bringing the total count to 413. Total number of operational rigs during the same period in the U.S. was 514, comprising of 413 oil rigs and 101 gas exploration rigs.

There was some optimism in the market based on the meeting of OPEC members Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Venezuela and non-OPEC member Russia that planned to curtail production to January 2016 production levels. The supply cut would help prop-up crude oil prices to around $50 by June 2016.

Market analysts forecast the rig count to decline in the coming months and then rise in line with rising crude oil prices.

U.S. shale gas producers have hedged 2017 crude oil prices in the futures market at around $45 a barrel, anticipating a price recovery in prices.

Source: Reuters, Marinelink

Preliminary decision on oil output freeze to conclude by 1 March

Major oil producers led by Russia and Saudi Arabia planned on concluding their preliminary talks on freezing crude oil output by 1 March 2016, states Russia’s energy minister Alexander Novak. A meeting with major oil producers concluded in Doha, Qatar, this week.

A conclusive agreement with all oil producing nations could see output falling by 1.3m barrels per day, in line with average daily output of January 2016.

Saudi Arabia, Russia, Qatar and Venezuela have jointly agreed to freeze output to levels observed in Janauary 2016 if other nations agree to do so.

Iran welcomed the move but has not yet formally committed itself to reducing its output. Its Deputy Oil Minister Rokneddin Javadi stated on Saturday that Iran would aim to increase its output to 700,000 barrels per day in the coming months.

Oil output excluding Iran is expected to decline provided other nations resort to reduced production, according to Alexey Texler, Russia’s Deputy Energy Minister.

Source: Reuters

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