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Saudi Arabia overtakes Russia as the leading OPEC+ producer.

Dubai, Wednesday, 12 January 2022 -

According to the Energy Intelligence Group on Tuesday, Saudi Arabia eclipsed Russia as the OPEC+ group's greatest crude oil producer in December, defeating the non-OPEC leader that has struggled to ramp up output as the union lifts supplies in monthly increments.

Under an agreement between OPEC+ members, Russia and Saudi Arabia have had identical output caps since April 2020, but Russia has consistently outproduced the Saudis, regularly exceeding the pact's quota.

Last month, Saudi Arabia produced 10.01 million barrels per day (bpd), up 104,000 bpd from November, while Russia's output barely grew by 7,000 bpd to slightly under 9.95 million bpd.

According to figures given by the group following their previous meeting earlier this month, the 19 nations subject to quotas produced 37.59 million bpd in December, falling short of the goal 38.34 million bpd by about 750,000 bpd.

According to Energy Intelligence, the alliance is more than two months behind schedule on the 400,000 bpd monthly increases it approved last summer as countries fall short of their quotas.

"To put it another way, the amount of oil the alliance produced in December should have been achieved in October," it said, adding that the gap between targeted and realised output could widen in January-February as planned monthly increases are maintained while several members struggle to meet them.

The alliance's two biggest under-producers, Nigeria and Angola, missed their December targets by a combined 670,000 bpd, accounting for over 90% of the shortfall.

(Written and edited by: The Decision Maker – Middle East Team)


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