Supply disruptions, US attempts to shut out Iran buoy oil prices


Saudi Arabia is planning to pump a record amount of crude in July, embarking on one of its biggest-ever export surges to cool down oil prices, Bloomberg reported citing people briefed on the country's output policy. But at the moment, the Congolese government is more concerned - and rightly so - about enjoying an equilibrium in global oil markets and attracting higher investments into the sector.

"Yes, we are asking them to go to zero", the official said when asked if the United States was pushing allies, including China and India, to cut oil imports to zero by November.

If the sudden removal of those supplies from the world market generates a sustained increase in oil prices, then Trump's withdrawal from the Iran deal won't just jeopardize Tehran's commitment to nuclear nonproliferation - but also his party's prospects in November's midterm elections. "We would not be surprised if Brent were to trade once again above $80 a barrel".

Trying to make up for disrupted supply, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said late last week it would increase output. That means when the United States is interacting with foreign oil producers politically-such as sanctioning Venezuela, Russia, or Iran-it still must be cognizant of how those actions will affect domestic oil prices. President Donald Trump has repeatedly criticized OPEC for limiting oil production.

Crude oil prices rose 0.24 per cent to Rs 4,615 per barrel at the futures trade due to creation of fresh bets by speculators on firm global cues.

"What the Saudis, other GCC members and Russian Federation are clearly saying is that we don't want to overtake the market".

IEA estimated OPEC had almost 3.5 million bpd in April 2018, with Saudi Arabia accounting for about 60%.

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Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Saturday the kingdom will increase output by hundreds of thousands of barrels, with exact figures to be decided later.

Last week, OPEC and other producers led by Russian Federation agreed to raise output as all producers that had cut production beginning 18 months ago, will each strive for 100% compliance.

Out of OPEC's share Saudi Arabia was likely to produce between 300,000 bpd and 400,000 bpd, above its current production target of 10.058 million bpd, OPEC sources said.

"The kingdom's energy minister Khalid Al Falih indicated that members of the new deal with spare capacity - predominantly Saudi Arabia, its Gulf allies and Russian Federation - will increase output to make up for those that can not produce enough", reported FT.

US stocks sank in a broad sell-off on escalating U.S.

The IEA noted that higher prices have already "raised doubts about the strength of demand growth".