News / Economy

Iran, Iraq Warn OPEC of Big Oil Increases

Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh is surrounded by journalists and security staff as he arrives at his hotel ahead of an OPEC meeting in Vienna, Dec. 3, 2013.
Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh is surrounded by journalists and security staff as he arrives at his hotel ahead of an OPEC meeting in Vienna, Dec. 3, 2013.
Reuters
Iran and Iraq on Tuesday put OPEC on notice of substantial oil output increases to come, saying others in the producer cartel will need to give way to make room for them.

Speaking ahead of an OPEC meeting, oil ministers for the two countries - rivals as the group's second and third biggest producers after Saudi Arabia - said they were targeting 4 million barrels per day [bpd], growth of about one million bpd apiece.

Neither country can expect to reach those goals any time soon, but both are keen to prepare the ground for special treatment should the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries need next year to negotiate a deal to curb supplies to keep oil prices above its favored $100 a barrel.

Neither can raise output quickly enough to make waves at Wednesday's OPEC meeting - ministers confidently predict no change in the group's production cap of 30 million bpd.

“This looks like jockeying for position ahead of a potential need for a need for a structured output agreement in 2014,” said Bill Farren-Price of consultancy Petroleum Policy Intelligence.

A senior Gulf delegate said next June's meeting might require OPEC to consider supply cuts. More oil from Iran and Iraq, a recovery in output from fellow OPEC member Libya and fast-rising U.S. shale oil could tip the balance.

“Maybe we'll talk about cuts in six months from now,” he said.

Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said Iran will take six months after sanctions are lifted to return to full oil output capacity of 4 million bpd.

Zanganeh was reappointed by Iran's new reformist President Hassan Rouhani and will be responsible for rebuilding Iran's oil industry should Washington and Brussels lift sanctions in six months as part of a deal on Iran's nuclear program.

“In Zanganeh's favor, he's the one oil minister in Iran's post-revolutionary period to have a positive impact on increasing production capacity and took it above 4 million for a period of time. He has form,” said Farren-Price.

Iranian oilfields had not suffered technically as a result of the sanctions which have seen Iranian oil output fall by a million barrels per day to less than three million bpd, Zanganeh said.

Asked whether he expected others in OPEC to make room for Iran's return, Zanganeh said: “This is the tradition. When a member country after some difficulties returns to the market, other members accept to make room for them.”

“The member countries who produced more during the past years. I think they will understand they should make room for Iran,” he said.

Both Saudi Arabia and Iraq have raised output in the past two years since sanctions were imposed on Tehran, but Baghdad will argue that it should be a special case given many years lost to sanctions and war under former President Saddam Hussein.

Cautious Iran budget

Zanganeh said he hoped Iran would lift exports in 2014 from current levels of around 1.2 million bpd.

But Tehran is not betting on making much headway next year.

Rouhani's first draft budget for 2014 estimates oil exports at 1.1 million bpd, Iranian oil ministry website Shana said, indicating Tehran sees no major recovery in sales next year.

Rouhani is scheduled to present the draft budget for the next Iranian year - beginning March 21 - to parliament on Wednesday.

Iraq reckons it can hit four million bpd next year in what would be the country's biggest annual oil supply increase since the fall of Saddam a decade ago.

Iraqi Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Luaibi said Baghdad planned to lift exports to 3.4 million barrels daily, including 400,000 bpd from the semi-autonomous Kurdistan regional government KRG).

With domestic consumption running at about 700,000 bpd that would take total Iraqi supply above 4 million bpd, up from just below three million bpd now.

That scale of such a production increase would raise the pressure on others in OPEC, chiefly Saudi Arabia, to curb supply to prevent oil prices falling.

But industry experts and oil company executives working on Iraqi oilfield development say a four million bpd output target looks very optimistic for next year because of infrastructure constraints and security issues.

“Those Iraqi estimates are over optimistic. I don't think their production can hit that,” said Cuneyt Kazokoglu of energy consultancy FGE. “Neither can KRG exports hit 400,000 bpd. If they really push it perhaps they could do 300,000 bpd.”

“Iraq has serially failed to meet its expansion targets in recent years and this latest pronouncement stretches credibility,” said Farren-Price.

You May Like

Video Claims to Show Shia Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boy

While not yet independently confirmed, brutal killing already has gotten attention of Islamic State followers on social media More

After Six Years, Little Change for Niger Delta's Former Militants

Nigerians who laid down arms in exchange for government amnesty subsidies fear program may end with upcoming presidential elections More

Vietnam Pushes for More Educated Drivers to Curb Road Deaths

Transportation officials hope that making a greater effort to get drivers to learn the rules of the road will reduce fatal crashes More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planeti
X
George Putic
March 04, 2015 8:51 PM
NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planet

NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Muslims Radicalized Online

Young Muslims are being radicalized ‘in their bedrooms’ through direct contact with Islamic State or ISIL fighters via the Internet, according to terror experts. There are growing concerns that authorities and Internet providers are not doing enough to counter online extremism - which analysts say is spread by a prolific network of online supporters around the world. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video African Americans Recall 1960's Fight For Voting Rights

U.S. President Barack Obama and thousands of people will gather in the small southern U.S. city of Selma, Alabama, Saturday, March 7th to commemorate the 50th anniversary of a historic voting rights march that became known as “Bloody Sunday." VOA’s Chris Simkins traveled to Alabama and introduces us to some of the foot soldiers of the voting rights struggles of the 1960’s.
Video

Video Positive Messaging Transforms Ethiopia's Image

Ethiopia was once known for famine and droughts. Now, headlines more often point to its fast-growing economy and its emergence as a regional peacemaker. How has Addis Ababa changed the narrative? VOA's Marthe van der Wolf reports.
Video

Video Cyber War Rages Between Iran, US

A newly published report indicates Iran and the United States have increased their cyber attacks on each other, even as their top diplomats are working toward an agreement to guarantee Iran does not develop a nuclear weapon and to free Iran from international sanctions. The development is part of a growing global trend. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Answers Elude Families of MH370 Passengers

For the families on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, an airline official’s statement nearly one year ago that the plane had lost contact with air traffic control at 2:40 AM is the only thing that remains confirmed. William Ide reports.
Video

Video Land Disputes Arise Amid Uganda Oil Boom

Ugandan police say there has been a sharp increase in land disputes, with 10 new cases being reported each day. The claims come amid an oil boom as investors appear to be cashing in by selling parcels of land to multiple buyers. Meanwhile, the people who have been living on the land for decades are chased away, sometimes with a heavy hand. VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
Video

Video In Russia, Many Doubt Opposition Leader's Killer Will Be Found

The funeral has been held in Moscow for Boris Nemtsov, the opposition leader who was assassinated late Friday just meters from the Kremlin. Nemtsov joins a growing list of outspoken critics of Russia under the leadership of President Vladimir Putin who are believed to have been murdered for their work. VOA’s Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Video

Video Simulated Astronauts Get Taste of Mars, in Hawaii

For generations, people have dreamed of traveling to Mars to explore Earth's closest planetary neighbor. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports that while space agencies like NASA are planning manned missions to the planet, some volunteers in Hawaii are learning how humans will cope with months in isolation on a Mars base.
Video

Video Destruction of Iraq Artifacts Shocks Archaeologists

The city of Mosul was once one of the most culturally rich and religiously diverse cities in Iraq. That tradition is under attack by members of the Islamic State who have made Mosul their capital city. The Mosul Museum is the latest target of the group’s campaign of terror and destruction, and is of grave concern to archaeologists around the world. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video Smartphones May Help in Diagnosing HIV

Diagnosing infections such as HIV requires expensive clinical tests, making the procedure too costly for many poor patients or those living in remote areas. But a new technology called lab-on-a-chip may make the tests more accessible to many. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials have expressed concern over reports of a crackdown on Afghan refugees in Pakistan following the Peshawar school attack in December. Reports of mass arrests and police harassment coupled with fear of an uncertain future are making life difficult for a population that fled its homeland to escape war. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports from Islamabad.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.8954
JPY
USD
119.75
GBP
USD
0.6515
CAD
USD
1.2518
INR
USD
61.921

Rates may not be current.