OPEC+ Extends Oil Output Cuts Into 2025

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its partners is a group of leading oil producers known as OPEC+. On Sunday, they agreed to extend production cuts announced last year into 2025.

The group said in a statement that it would extend a cut of 1.65 million barrels per day, announced in April 2023, until the end of 2025. That cut was due to expire at the end of this year.

It is also extending a cut of 2.2 million barrels per day. It was announced in November until the end of September this year that it would be “gradually phased out every month” by the end of September 2025.

The group also released its 2025 production requirements for member and nonmember countries. They are essentially the same as this year’s. The United Arab Emirates’ production quota increased by 300,000 barrels per day. The group said the uptick “will be phased in gradually” from January through September 2025.

Sunday’s decisions mean the OPEC+ group will continue to restrict supply for at least the next 18 months. They gradually start drip-feeding some extra barrels back into the market later this year.

That cut was due to expire at the end of this month. It came on top of previously agreed reductions of 3.66 million barrels per day announced in 2022 and 2023. The group led by Saudi Arabia and Russia tried to counter slowing demand and rising output from the United States.

Despite the OPEC+ cuts, which are equivalent to about 5.7% of global crude supply in total. The ongoing tensions in the Middle East, global oil prices have fallen by about 11% since hitting a five-month high in early April.

Prices Subdued

The expense of Brent crude, the global oil bar, ticked up 0.1% to trade at $81 a barrel by 4.30 a.m. ET on Monday. It traded at $91 in early April when a suspected Israeli airstrike on Iran’s embassy in Syria sent jitters through oil markets.

The expense of West Texas Intermediate crude, the US benchmark, also rose 0.1% by the same time on Monday morning to trade at $77 a barrel. It is down from nearly $87 per barrel in early April.

According to the IMF, Saudi Arabia needs Brent crude at around $81 a barrel to balance its budget.

Subdued prices have partly resulted from record US oil output, which has bumped global supply, and concerns about sluggish demand in China — the world’s biggest importer of oil — and other major economies.

In its updated monthly report, the International Energy Agency cut its forecast for the growth in global oil demand this year by 140,000 barrels per day to 1.1 million barrels per day, citing weak demand in developed economies, particularly in Europe.

Despite the weaker growth forecast, a supply crunch could develop. The IEA expects global supply to increase by just 580,000 barrels per day this year. In March, the Paris-based agency said it expected a deficit in supply in 2024 if OPEC+ extended its output cuts through the rest of the year.

Sunday’s OPEC+ decision coincides with Saudi Arabia selling more shares in its oil company Aramco. The government is selling less than 1% of the Riyadh-listed company in a deal that could raise $13 billion for economic diversification projects.

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