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Opec crude output at two-year low as global production falls

Steep falls in output from Libya and Iraq led to Opec output falling below 30m b/d

Global oil production fell by 625,000 barrels a day (b/d) in September, to 91.1 million b/d, driven by Opec output losses.

Opec crude production fell below 30m b/d for the first time in almost two years because of steep falls in output from Libya and Iraq, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said.

Opec supply fell by 645,000 b/d, to 29.99m b/d, the lowest level since October 2011. This is despite Saudi Arabian production topping 10 million b/d for the third consecutive month.  Iraq’s output fell by 400,000 b/d, to an 18-month low of 2.82m b/d, because of planned upgrading work at its southern ports. Libya’s production averaged just 300,000 b/d because of ongoing labour disputes, tribal violence and political instability, the agency said. Iran’s output also fell by 100,000 b/d in September to 2.58m b/d.

The IEA raised the call on Opec crude and stock change by 100,000 b/d for the fourth quarter of 2013, to 29.6m b/d. The agency said that the call on Opec will fall to 29m b/d next year as non-Opec output is expected to rise. 
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Opec production losses were partially offset but a rise in non-Opec output. Non-Opec output was 20,000 b/d higher month-on-month in September, reaching 54.61m b/d, as a gain in output from former Soviet Union producers offset supply losses from Norway.

The IEA expects non-Opec oil production to increase by around 1.1m b/d this year, reaching 54.7m b/d. In 2014, non-Opec supply will increase on average by a further 1.7m b/d, the agency said. In the second quarter of next year it will peak at 1.9m b/d, the highest annual growth rate since the 1970s.

The IEA estimates there was a 7.8m barrel draw in OECD industry oil stocks. Commercial inventories now stand at 2.6bn barrels, the agency said.

The IEA said exceptionally high US refinery crude runs in September lifted the global throughput rate for the third quarter of 2013, by 100,000 b/d, to 77.3m b/d.

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