Sat, Aug 10, 2013 - Page 15 News List

OPEC crude output drops to six-month low on Libya: IEA


OPEC crude production dropped by 0.6 percent last month to the lowest in six months because of supply disruptions in Libya, even as Saudi Arabia pumped the most in a year, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).

The 12 members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries produced 30.41 million barrels a day last month, the least since January, the Paris-based IEA said yesterday in its monthly oil-market report. This compares with 30.58 million barrels in June.

“Libya has seen oil supplies plummet amid worsening labor disputes and civil unrest, with exports plunging by one-third in early August,” the IEA said.

Libya’s output fell by 150,000 barrels a day to an average of 1 million barrels last month after reaching a high this year of 1.42 million barrels in April, according to the report.

Saudi Arabia pumped 9.8 million, up 150,000 barrels from June, the IEA said.

“Saudi Arabia typically increases production during the seasonally stronger demand in April to September to meet increased domestic use of crude for power generation in the peak summer air-conditioning season,” the agency said.

Iraqi crude production fell to 2.99 million last month, below the 3 million-barrel-a-day mark for the first time in five months, and exports are forecast to plummet by about 500,000 barrels starting in September following planned infrastructure work at southern shipping terminals, the IEA said.

Demand for OPEC crude was revised up by 200,000 barrels a day for the third quarter and the year to 30 million barrels a day and 29.8 million barrels respectively, according to the report.

OPEC’s effective spare capacity last month was estimated at 3.08 million barrels a day, compared with 3.13 million barrels last month, with Saudi Arabia holding nearly 80 percent of the surplus, the IEA said.

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