OPEC boosts September output to plug Iran gap

OPEC crude oil production rose in September as the group pumped to offset reduction in supply from Iran but lowered its expectation of next year’s oil demand.

The group increased output in September by 132,000 bpd to average 32.76 million bpd, OPEC said in its Monthly Oil Market Report of October, citing secondary sources.

Saudi Arabia Libya saw production gains of about 100,000 bpd each, while Iran’s production took a hit of 150,000 bpd as fears of sanctioned pushed away some of its customers. Saudi Arabia plans to boost output again in October to reach an output of 10.7 million bpd and will hike it again in November, according to Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al Falih.

Meanwhile, OPEC reduced its forecast for world oil demand in 2018 and 2019 on weaker economic growth, especially in emerging markets. It expects growth of 1.36 million bpd to average 100.15 million bps in 2019 – a reduction of 50,000 bpd from last month’s report. It also sees non-OPEC oil supply to rise over the same period. In 2019, supply could rise by 0.18 million bpd to reach an average of 61.89 million bpd, it said.

Earlier, in its World Oil Demand 2018 – OPEC said it expects long-term oil demand to increase by 14.5 million bpd to reach 111.7 million bpd by 2040, driven by global economic growth, population increase and more stringent regulations due to climate change objectives.

This figure is slightly higher than last year’s number in spite of overall demand growth generally slowing over the projection period.

To meet this demand, the oil-producing group said significant investments across the entire industry will be required, reaching almost $11 trillion over the years until 2040.

“While investments picked up slightly in 2017 compared to the previous two years, and the expectations are for higher levels again in 2018, it is vital that as an industry we ensure there is timely and adequate investment so as not to lead to a supply shortage in the future,” OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo said in the report.

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