A Reuters Agency survey has shown that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) recorded its highest oil output since April 2020 in August 2021.
This is in spite of involuntary losses which limited the rise in oil production output following the easing of production limits by OPEC’s top producers which they had entered before with their allies.
According to the survey, OPEC pumped 26.93 million barrels per day (bpd) in August, up by 210,000 bpd from July’s estimate.
Output has risen every month since June 2020, apart from in February, the survey revealed.
It has been a trend by OPEC and allies, known as OPEC+, to ease output cuts agreed in April 2020 following the increase in demand.
It will be recalled that in April 2020, in the heat of the lockdown, global oil prices fell to an all time low, recording even below $1 per barrel, a situation which led to massive cutbacks in oil production.
OPEC+ will meet on Wednesday and is expected to stick to its policy, with oil up 40% this year at almost $73 a barrel.
It is reported that the OPEC+ agreement allowed for a 400,000 bpd production increase in August from all members, out of which 253,000 bpd was to have been shared by the 10 OPEC members covered by the deal.
The Reuters Survey reveals that while the 10 OPEC members raised output by more than the allowed production increment, OPEC as a whole under-delivered on the expected month-on-month rise with its members still pumping less than called for under the latest deal.
While Saudi Arabia delivered the biggest increase of 180,000 bpd, as it further raised output as part of the August OPEC+ boost, among countries with lower output was Nigeria, which had the biggest decline where output dropped by 100,000 bpd, perhaps, because exports from the Forcados terminal were under force majeure following a leak.
The survey further revealed that OPEC compliance with pledged cuts was 115%, a level unchanged from July.