Saudi Arabia will quietly add extra oil to the market over the next couple of months to offset a drop in Iranian production but is worried it might need to limit output next year to balance global supply and demand as the United States pumps more crude.
The kingdom, OPEC’s top producer, came under renewed pressure last week from U.S. President Donald Trump to cool oil prices ahead of a meeting in Algiers between a number of OPEC ministers and allies including Russia.
Sources confirmed to CNBC that Saudi Arabia is ready to put as much as 550,000 additional barrels onto the market. The gains will come from about 200,000 barrels per day from its Kurais oil field, as well as resumed capacity from some pipeline issues with the Manifa field.
Sources said though that this increased supply is reliant on demand. If demand is apparent, supply will grow accordingly, OPEC insiders told CNBC.
But Riyadh decided against pressing for an official increase now as it realized it would not secure agreement from all producers present at the talks, some of which lack spare production capacity and would be unable to boost output quickly.
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