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Saudi Oil Exports Fall to 6.9m Bpd in February

Saudi Oil Exports Fall to 6.9m Bpd in February

Friday, 19 April, 2019 - 11:45
(File photo: Reuters)
London- Asharq Al-Awsat
Saudi Arabia continued to slash its oil exports as this year progressed with February crude shipments dropping by 227,000 bpd from January, as the official data of Joint Organizations Data Initiative (JODI) showed.

The world’s top oil exporter shipped 6.977 million bpd in February, down from 7.254 million bpd in January, according to JODI. The kingdom pumped 10.136 million bpd in February, down from 10.243 million bpd in January.

Saudi crude inventories rose to 204.567 million barrels in February from 200.834 million in January, the JODI data showed. Saudi oil stocks peaked in October 2015 at a record 329.430 million barrels.

Saudi’s local refineries processed 2.767 million bpd in February, up from 2.758 million bpd in January, according to JODI. Exports of refined oil products in February fell to 1.461 million bpd, from 1.616 million bpd the month before, the data showed.

The OPEC heavyweight used 259,000 bpd of crude oil to generate power in February, down from 377,000 bpd the month before, while Saudi demand for oil products in February was 2.157 million bpd, up slightly from 2.073 million bpd in January, according to the data.

Monthly export figures are provided by Riyadh and other members of OPEC to JODI, which publishes them on its website.

In a related matter, Iraq's Minister of Oil Thamer al-Ghadhban said on Thursday that Saudi state-owned oil giant Aramco will help his government explore for gas in Iraq's western desert, according to Al-Arabiya television.

Brent crude futures were at 71.43 dollars a barrel at 0700 GMT, down 19 cents or 0.3 percent from their last close and further away from Wednesday’s five-month high of 72.27 dollars a barrel. The US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at 63.62 dollars per barrel, down 14 cents or 0.2 percent.

Both contracts had traded slightly higher earlier in the day. US crude inventories fell by 1.4 million barrels in the week to April 12 compared with analyst expectations for an increase of 1.7 million barrels, Department of Energy (DoE) data showed on Wednesday.

Gasoline stocks fell by 1.2 million barrels, less than analyst expectations in a Reuters’ poll for a 2.1 million-barrel drop.

Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, fell by 362,000 barrels, also not as much as forecasts for 846,000-barrel drawdown, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) data showed.

Global supply has also been tightened further by US sanctions on OPEC members Venezuela and Iran.

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