Wednesday, 19 September, 2018

Saudis to pump 2mn more barrels of oil

Nellie Chapman | 04 July, 2018, 01:35

Oil prices had risen on Friday on worries that USA sanctions against Iran would take away significant volumes of crude oil from world markets while oil demand worldwide increases.

The premium of near-term USA oil over long-dated contracts increased as analysts forecast continued shrinking supplies in the key Cushing, Oklahoma, supply hub. That's what we're doing.

The cabinet affirmed that the launch of the Saudi Project for Landmines Clearance in Yemen, carried out under the King Salman for Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center, is an extension of the history of the Kingdom, which has been providing aid where more than 600,000 landmines have been found, as well as 130,000 sea mines, and 40,000 mines in Marib governorate and 16,000 mines in Muen Island.

"We are working to minimize disruptions to the global market, but we are confident there is sufficient global spare oil capacity", Hook said. Trump has imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum in response to what he calls unfair trade practices from Europe, Canada, and other allies around the world, who have responded with retaliatory sanctions in kind.

"The (Iranian) government has a plan. and God willing we are certain that we will be able to sell as much oil as we want", he said.

The US earlier this year withdrew from the deal limiting Iran's nuclear programme in return for allowing the company to resell its oil on world markets.

The White House later walked back the president's comments, saying the king had said his country could raise oil production if needed. The International Energy Agency estimates OPEC's spare capacity could fall in to around 2.5 mbpd (excluding Iran) - by the first half of 2019, its lowest level since the end of 2016 when record production from the Middle East reduced spare capacity to around 1.9 million bpd.

Saudi Arabia, the world's top crude exporter, said Tuesday it was prepared to use its spare production capacity, estimated at two million barrels, to balance the global oil market.

Looming US sanctions against Iran further contribute to expected tightness. "They seek to push Iranian exports of crude, condensate, and oil products to zero", energy consultancy FGE said in a note.

Trump threatened in an interview that aired on Sunday to put sanctions on European companies that do business with Iran.

Overall, however, analysts said OPEC's production policy as well as unplanned supply disruptions were now the main price drivers. But Indian banks and insurers have said they would not finance oil transactions with Iran.

After the USA withdrew from the Iranian nuclear deal in May, it said it would reimpose economic sanctions against Tehran by November.

State Deparment's Hook says any sort of waiver or similar moves would reduce pressure on Iran. But he says the U.S. "is prepared to work with countries that are reducing their imports on a case-by-case basis".