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Iran Boosts OPEC Oil Output in April

Iran Boosts OPEC Oil Output in April

Saturday, 1 May, 2021 - 04:45
FILE PHOTO: An employee rides a bicycle next to oil tanks at Saudi Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia October 12, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

OPEC oil output has risen in April as higher supply from Iran countered involuntary cuts and agreed reductions by other members under a pact with allies, a Reuters survey found, adding to signs of a 2021 recovery in Tehran’s exports.

The 13-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 25.17 million barrels per day (bpd) in April, the survey found, up 100,000 bpd from March. Output has risen every month since June 2020 with the exception of February.

Iran’s exports are rising as talks take place to revive a 2015 nuclear deal which could eventually allow more oil to the market.

US President Joe Biden’s administration took office in January pledging to rejoin the accord.

So far, OPEC and its allies, known as OPEC+, are not concerned by Iran and plan their own output boost from May.

“The elevated levels that we are seeing from Iran are generally continuing,” Daniel Gerber, chief executive of Petro-Logistics, a consultant that tracks oil shipments, told Reuters this month.

Hoping for a demand recovery, OPEC+ this week confirmed a plan to ease from May more of the record cuts made in 2020.

From May Saudi Arabia will also begin to unwind an extra voluntary cut it made in February, March and April.

The extra Saudi cut means OPEC still pumped much less than called for under the OPEC+ deal in April. Compliance with pledged cuts was 123%, the survey found, versus 124% in March.

Iran, plus fellow OPEC members Libya and Venezuela, are exempt from making cuts, so changes in their output do not affect the compliance rate.

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