(Bloomberg) — Saudi Arabia kept its crude oil output broadly stable last month, pumping 8.974 million barrels a day in September compared with 8.988 million barrels a day in August, according to an industry official familiar with the kingdom’s production levels.
The kingdom has been restraining production since May as part of an historic OPEC+ agreement to remove nearly a 10th of the world’s oil supply to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the energy market. Under the OPEC+ deal, Riyadh has a production target of just under 9 million barrels a day.
With Brent crude under $40 a barrel as countries re-impose pandemic restrictions, the OPEC+ alliance is under pressure to deliver on those promised cuts. Saudi Arabia and Russia, the leaders of the group, have largely led on compliance, but Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Nigeria and others have at times pumped well above their targets. The group is scheduled to meet on Nov. 30-Dec. 1 to review production policy.
The kingdom exported 6.1 million barrels a day during September, up from 6.0 million barrels a day in August, the same official said, asking not to be named because the information isn’t public.
Saudi Arabia traditionally has more oil for export after the end of its torrid summer as its domestic petroleum consumption declines. The kingdom directly burns crude in some power stations during the summer to generate electricity and meet peak demand for air conditioning.
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