Russian oil output down in March, misses global deal target

Russian oil output declined to 11.298 million barrels per day (bpd) last month, Energy Ministry data showed on Tuesday, missing the target set under a global deal to cut oil production.

The March output was down by around 112,000 bpd from the October 2018 level, the baseline of the global deal.

Under the agreement, Russia pledged to cut its oil output by 228,000 bpd from that level.

In tonnes, Russian oil production reached 47.78 million tonnes. (Reuters uses the 7.33 barrels and tonnes ratio)

Russian Energy Minister, Alexander Novak, said on Tuesday that the country’s oil production in April would be in line with the global deal between OPEC and non-OPEC countries.

The ministry said separately that by the end of March Russia cut production by 225,000 bpd from the average October 2018 level.

The data showed that Russia’s largest oil producer, Rosneft, cut its output by around 0.45 per cent in March from February.

Producers, listed as “other” than majors, reduced their production in March by 0.63 per cent in March on month-on-month.

The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other large global oil producers, led by Russia, agreed to cut their combined oil production by 1.2 million bpd, starting from Jan. 1 for the next six months.

OPEC oil supply sank to a four-year low in March, a Reuters survey found, as top exporter Saudi Arabia over-delivered on the group’s supply-cutting pact, while Venezuelan output fell further due to sanctions and power outages.

The biggest drop in supply came from Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s biggest producer, which pumped 220,000 bpd less than in February, the survey showed.

Sources told Reuters that Saudi Arabia is having a hard time convincing Russia to stay much longer in the OPEC-led pact, and Moscow may only agree to a three-month extension. (Reuters/NAN)

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