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Novak sees Russia’s 2019 crude oil output at 11.165 mil b/d, possibly lower on OPEC deal

Moscow — Russian energy minister Alexander Novak expects his country’s crude oil output in 2019 to be around 555-556 million mt (11.145-11.165 million b/d) but said this figure could be revised downwards due to OPEC+ agreements to cut production, the Prime news agency reported him as saying Tuesday.

“A lot can change over the course of a year, depending on decisions on coordinated joint action… Next year the forecast is 555-556 million mt, but that may be adjusted downwards by 3-4 million mt… to I think 552 million mt,” Novak said.

A figure of 552 million mt would be equivalent to around 11.085 million b/d according to calculations by S&P Global Platts, based on a conversion rate of 7.33 barrels to a metric ton.

Earlier this month OPEC and non-OPEC countries agreed to cut crude output for six months from January 2019, pledging to take a combined total of 1.2 million b/d off the market, using October 2018 production levels as the baseline. Of the 400,000 b/d non-OPEC commitment, Russia has pledged to reduce output by 228,000 b/d, although it plans to reach this target gradually. Russia produced a record level of 11.41 million b/d in October 2018.

Novak said Tuesday that Russia may reach its target in the first quarter. Previously he predicted that output will fall by 50,000-60,000 b/d in January.

Russia is cutting output gradually, as freezing winter temperatures in the country make a rapid reduction impractical. The group is to meet in April to review the progress of the deal.

Novak added that he will discuss output plans with Russian producers Wednesday.

“A meeting is scheduled with oil companies, we will discuss the situation, including how the domestic market will develop up to the end of the year, the traditional question of operations next year taking into account new legislation and also of course we will discuss the situation on international markets and company actions in regard to decisions that have been taken,” Novak said, according to the report.

S&P global platts

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