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OPEC+ seen sticking with oil output policy at 1 February meeting - delegates

January 30, 2023 at 6:39 pm

OPEC building [Zamoto Media/Facebook]

An OPEC+ panel is likely to recommend keeping the oil producer group’s current output policy unchanged when it meets this week, five OPEC+ delegates told Reuters on Monday.

Ministers from OPEC+ countries – members of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and others, including Russia – are due to hold a virtual meeting at 1100 GMT on 1 February, Reuters reports.

The panel, called the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC), can call for a full OPEC+ meeting, if warranted.

Five OPEC+ sources told Reuter’s last week that the JMMC would discuss the economic outlook and the scale of Chinese demand, and was unlikely to suggest tweaks to current policy.

One said the rebound in oil prices in 2023 made any changes unlikely.

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“The boat is not really in stormy seas right now, so why rock something that’s not moving?” said Ole Hansen, head of Commodity Strategy at Saxo Bank.

The group will want to buy some time, given the uncertainty related to sanctions on Russia and their impact on supply, Hansen added.

OPEC+ agreed in October to cut its production target by 2 million barrels per day (bpd), about 2 per cent of world demand, from November until the end of 2023.

The JMMC meeting had been due to follow a meeting of the OPEC+ joint technical committee (JTC) on 31 January. This has now been cancelled, four OPEC+ sources also told Reuters on Monday.

The JTC was cancelled because there is nothing new to discuss, two sources said.

The committee advises the JMMC and the overall OPEC+ ministerial meeting on market fundamentals.

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