Global oil price: Nigeria'll support OPEC resolve to stabilise market, says Kachikwu

IEA raises forecast for global oil demand this year

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Technically, the deal now permits Libya and Nigeria to continue with unfettered production for the rest of 2017 and into the first quarter of 2018, but there are some indications that OPEC may pressure these two countries to cut production sooner.

Fresh cracks were exposed in OPEC's agreement to cut production, as signs emerged that the oil group is struggling to adhere to the deal.

Many traders and analysts say most of the agreement's benefits are being reaped by USA producers, who are flooding the market. Any warm up in temperatures at this point will heat up natural gas prices that may see storage come in at the end of the season at the lowest level in five years.

Not only has Libya's oil production rebounded, but it also appears that these gains are not temporary. Nigerian output rose by 60,000 barrels a day month over month and Libyan output rose by 80,000 barrels a day.

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There were concerns that compliance to production quotas would fade within individual members which would make it more hard to hold discipline and risk a gradual net increase in production levels.

Oil prices were slightly lower on Thursday after the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) estimated a decline in demand for crude next year as rivals produce more, indicating a market surplus to occur in 2018 despite efforts to cut output.

In total, global oil demand was projected to reach 98 million bpd this year.

Although Nigeria, a prominent member of OPEC, was invited to the meeting, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, expressed regrets that he would not be able to attend as agreed earlier due to exigencies of other official commitments. Even a fresh agreement in May, between the OPEC and participating non-OPEC producers, failed to lift price.

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"U.S. inventory numbers confirmed that a drawdown (of excess inventories) was in train", ANZ bank said.

The EIA report also showed that US oil production inched higher by 59,000 barrels a day to almost 9.4 million barrels a day.

Anyway, no further oil output cuts are expected for the July meeting of the ministerial committee set up to monitor compliance with the OPEC-non-OPEC deal. West Texas Intermediate, the US benchmark for the price of oil, was up 20 cents percent to $45.69 per barrel for August. However, recently both countries have ramped up production, feared to offset the cuts implemented by the rest of the group. The EIA reported another 7.6 million barrel oil draw. Production (the IEA's estimation) was lagging behind demand at 96.69 million bpd in May.

The number of rigs in operation has more than doubled from May 2016. We would continue to monitor the level of compliance with the deal.

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