Oil minister confident of deal to extend output cut this month
November 13, 2017 | 5:35 PM
by Reuters/ Times News Service
Oman's current production is 968,000 barrels per day, and the country is abiding by its quota. - Times file picture

Abu Dhabi: Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhy, Minister of Oil and Gas, said on Monday that he was confident there would be an agreement among global oil producers later this month to extend output cuts.

Oman's current production is 968,000 barrels per day, and the country is abiding by its quota, he remarked on the sidelines of an energy conference in Abu Dhabi. The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) and other non-Opec producers will meet on November 30 in Vienna to decide on oil output policy.

The Sultanate’s crude oil output stood at 235.33 million barrels in the first eight months of 2017, against 244.79 million barrels in the same period last year. The country’s total exports declined by 9 per cent on a year-on-year basis in the first seven months of this year, to 197.08 million barrels from 216.46 million barrels. The Oman government has been encouraging multinational oil giants to find new reservoirs, in a move to sustain production levels.

The United Arab Emirates Energy Minister Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazroui stated he was optimistic about the oil market next year, as it was likely to continue its recovery. Mazroui said the global oil producers' supply cuts had helped remove almost 180 million barrels from storage in less than a year. Whatever Opec decides on future policy later this month, the UAE will be committed to it, he added.

According to an earlier agreement, the 21 nations participating in the supply cuts are collectively trying to reduce the output by almost 1.8 million barrels a day, in most cases, using October 2016 levels as the starting point. Iran is allowed to boost production slightly, while Opec members Libya and Nigeria are exempted. Russia is responsible for more than half of the non-Opec restrictions.

Meanwhile, Saudi Aramco plans to spend close to $300 billion over 10 years in upstream oil and gas projects, Chief Executive Amin Nasser said.

"This is mainly upstream, onshore, offshore and joint ventures in the Kingdom and out of the Kingdom."

He also said a decision would hopefully be made soon on the location for the listing of shares in the oil giant.

Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman said last month that Aramco's initial public offering, part of an ambitious plan to diversify the Saudi economy beyond oil, was on track to go ahead in 2018.

Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Group CEO of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc), stressed the company was on track to increase its upstream capacity to 3.5 million barrels per day. He confirmed Adnoc planned to increase its refining capacity by 60 per cent in downstream.

The oil market is rebalancing at an accelerating pace, as global levels of oil inventories have fallen visibly, and the demand for oil is robust, Opec Secretary-General Mohammad Barkindo affirmed.

Speaking at an energy industry conference, Barkindo emphasised he was confident that both the oil industry and the global economy were benefitting from the deal to cut output among the major producers. -Reuters/ Times News Service

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