Thursday, 21 February, 2019


OPEC output cuts likely next year

Crude Oil Crude Oil
Bennie Garza | 09 November, 2018, 14:20

Iran said it has so far been able to sell as much oil as it needs to.

But Trump carved out exemptions for China, Japan, South Korea, India and Taiwan in Asia, as well as Greece, Italy and Turkey in Europe. The report was largely in line with analyst expectations that this week would see another substantial build in crude oil inventories of 2.050 million barrels. If all Iranian oil is withdrawn from the market, it would lead to a huge increase in oil prices which would be a shock to the global economy.

Crude has tumbled nearly 20% since touching a four-year high last month as bearish supply signals around the globe crowded out concerns about disrupted exports from Iran and Venezuela. Iranian exports will continue to decline gradually and emerging markets will restock their inventories, says Goldman Sachs' commodity analyst Michael Hinds in a report published Wednesday.

An industry source who also monitors such shipments said the figure was likely to be on the low side. The oil import bill for the current financial year, 2018-19, is expected to rise to $125 billion, i.e., by 42 per cent.

Prices sank amid fears that the oil market is oversupplied compared to demand and have fallen steadily since the USA government eased sanctions on Iranian oil in October.

US crude production is accelerating, OPEC output is the highest in years and waivers will allow some Iranian crude exports despite USA sanctions. US sanctions had been lifted under the auspices of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA or, more simply, the Iran nuclear deal) negotiated by the Obama administration along with China, France, Russia, the U.K., Germany, and the European Union.

India, Iran's second-biggest oil customer, also cut orders ahead of the sanctions, hoping its effort to reduce reliance on Tehran would pay off in Washington and win it a waiver once the sanctions restarted.

"Any serious discussion will be toward the December meeting", the third source said.

However, Washington granted temporary waivers to eight countries, including China and India, the biggest purchasers of Iran's crude.

The new round of USA sanctions, which had been lifted under a multilateral 2015 nuclear accord with Iran, came back into force on November 5, drawing criticisms from the United Nations as well as Washington's allies in the European Union.

The wide-ranging exemptions have reduced fears of a supply shortage, taking pressure off companies, governments and economies around the world that have struggled with the surging cost of fuel.

US President Donald Trump pulled out of the landmark 2015 Iran nuclear deal in May, and sanctions targeting the country's oil sector took effect on 4 November.

WTI Crude prices slipped on Thursday by more than 20 percent from the four-year high hit just last month, entering bear market territory, as oil production in the United States continues to grow, Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia put a lot more oil on the market, while the global economy and oil demand growth are starting to show signs of slowdown.

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