LONDON, May 12, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Platts – Oil production from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) totaled 29.72 million barrels per day (b/ds) in April, up 160,000 b/d from March, led by increases in Iraq, Angola and Saudi Arabia, according to the latest Platts survey of OPEC and oil industry officials and analysts.
"There are a few striking numbers when you look at the country totals," said John Kingston, Platts global director of news. "First, when there were the first signs of a loosening of Iranian sanctions, the expectation was that there might be a surge in Iranian output. But the country's output has barely budged. Secondly, every so often there's news out of Libya that indicates the country might be headed toward reversal of its depressed production. But April output is the lowest it's been all year. It's these sorts of numbers that help to keep world prices above $100/barrel."
Iraq, despite the continued suspension of pipeline flows from the northern fields to Ceyhan in Turkey, increased output by 100,000 b/d to 3.25 million b/d. The country set a record of 2.509 million b/d for southern exports in April, which averaged less than 2.4 million b/d in March. Despite the coming on stream of new production in recent months, including West Qurna 2 in late March, technical constraints have limited the volume of oil available for export.
Saudi Arabia boosted output by 50,000 b/d to 9.65 million b/d in April. A Gulf source cited slightly higher requirements from customers. Within the kingdom, the 120,000 b/d Riyadh refinery closed down on April 15 for 45 days of maintenance.Angolan output also rose by 50,000 b/d to average 1.65 million b/d.