OPEC Pumped 32.66 Million b/d In September, pP 10,000 b/d From August: S&P Global Platts Survey


     * Venezuelan output slumps to 1.86 mil b/d

     * Libyan output recovery still volatile, production up 80,000 b/d

     * Saudi output 10 mil b/d; Iraq 4.50 mil b/d; Iran 3.83 mil b/d

     * OPEC compliance from Jan-Sep 106%                            

     OPEC oil output in September rose marginally by 10,000 b/d, as production

increases in Libya and Iraq were largely offset by declines in Venezuela and

Angola, an S&P Global Platts survey of OPEC and oil industry officials and

analysts showed Friday.

     OPEC's 14 members saw their collective September output rise to 32.66

million b/d from 32.65 million b/d in August.

     That is some 740,000 b/d above its declared ceiling of about 31.92

million b/d, when Equatorial Guinea, which joined in May, is added in and

Indonesia, which suspended its membership in December, is subtracted.

     OPEC announced the ceiling as part of a production cut agreement with 10

non-OPEC members, led by Russia, that calls on the entire group to lower

output by 1.8 million b/d.

     Libyan oil output rose in September by 80,000 b/d to 910,000 b/d, as the

key Sharara field, which has a full capacity of 300,000 b/d, was producing

about 200,000 b/d for most of the month after the field was down from August

19 to September 5.

     But the North African country's output recovery remains fraught with

challenges as the security of many fields remains volatile due to threats from

a militant group.

     Iraqi compliance with its quota under the production cut deal remains

among the weakest of the OPEC members, with production averaging 4.50 million

b/d in September, still 149,000 b/d above its output quota.

     Iraqi production rose 40,000 b/d from August on increased exports from

the southern terminals on the Persian Gulf and increased refinery consumption.



     Venezuelan production fell 40,000 b/d to 1.86 million b/d in September,

the survey found, as the country's crude exports dipped and its imports of

diluents to blend with its heavy crude were also curtailed due to Hurricane


     The decline in Venezuela's output has accelerated in the past several

months as various refinery units and heavy crude upgraders have been shut

down, exacerbated by the country's deepening economic crisis.

     Angolan output fell 30,000 b/d to 1.64 million b/d as exports and

production of grades such as Pazflor, Dalia, and Plutonio were down, according

to the survey.

     Nigerian production, meanwhile, fell 20,000 b/d to 1.84 million b/d in

the month, as key grade Bonny Light has been on force majeure since September

16 following the shutdown of the Nembe Creek Trunk Line.

     Output in OPEC's largest producer Saudi Arabia was down 10,000 b/d to 10

million b/d, as despite a slight rise in exports, the end of summer resulted

in lower direct crude burn, survey participants said.

     Iranian output in September was stable at 3.83 million b/d, as despite a

marginal rise in crude oil exports, refinery utilization fell, keeping

production steady.

     The country's oil minister Bijan Zanganeh insisted there was no pressure

on Iran to join the cuts.

     Iran's output has averaged 3.780 million b/d over the first eight months

since the deal came into effect in January, 17,000 b/d below the country's

official allocation of 3.797 million b/d.



     According to an average of January through September production, total

compliance among the 12 countries with quotas under the output cut agreement

is 106%.

     But that figure is boosted by strong overcompliance in the early part of

the year, as discipline has slipped in recent months. September compliance

among the 12 countries with quotas was 102%, rebounding from a low of 93%

in July.

     For OPEC as a whole, the significant recoveries in exempt Libya and

Nigeria have undone a big chunk of the cuts. The combined Libya and Nigeria

output for September is 430,000 b/d higher than it was in January, according

to survey data.

     The last few months have seen some positives for OPEC, notably falling

stock levels along with a stronger oil market structure supported by higher

global demand.

     This also translated in higher oil prices, with ICE Brent rising to over

two-year highs of around $59/b in late-September. But prices have since fallen

to $56-$57/b as concerns of surging US oil output and exports have re-emerged.

     The clamor to include exports as a monitoring mechanism has also grown,

after ministers on the monitoring committee, said they would now incorporate

export data to bolster trader confidence that the cuts are in fact lowering

supplies to the market.

     But some members remain hesitant about including exports due to the

difficulty in tracking them accurately, as well as the lumpy nature of

exports from month to month.


* Equatorial Guinea figure is only June-September production, as the country

joined OPEC on May 25.


Notes: On May 25, OPEC and 10 non-OPEC producers decided to extend their

existing production cuts by nine months -- a move that would keep nearly 1.8 

million b/d of crude oil off the market through March 2018.                  

     The agreement exempts Libya and Nigeria, while allowing Iran a small    

increase in production.                                                       

     Indonesia suspended its OPEC membership on November 30.           

     The estimate for Iraq includes volumes from semi-autonomous Iraqi       


     Equatorial Guinea became OPEC's smallest oil producer on May 25, when its

application to join OPEC was approved, bringing the oil producer bloc's      

membership up to 14.                                                         

     OPEC's next formal meeting is November 30 in Vienna.                 



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