• Naimi: No Oil Production Boost Until Crude Inventory Falls


    VIENNA, May 30 (Reuters) - OPEC would wait until crude inventories fell to around 53 days of forward cover before considering raising output, Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi was reported as saying in remarks published late on Friday.
    "We will wait until inventories are at the level which we consider reasonable, which is about 53 days of forward cover," the minister for the top oil exporter told industry publication Petroleum Argus in an interview. "I think that is a fair level."
    Oil stocks stand at around 62.4 days of cover, according to the International Energy Agency.
    State oil giant Saudi Aramco has capacity to produce at above 12.5 million bpd if needed, without including capacity in the neutral zone between the kingdom and Kuwait, Naimi said.
    "We could produce 12.5 million bpd even if we did not have the neutral zone," Naimi said.
    "Our surface facilities and pipelines provide more than 12.5 million bpd. What restricts us is the wells. We have the reserves and the drilling rigs. If we want to produce more than 12.5 million bpd from Aramco alone, we can do that."
    The Saudi side of the neutral zone had capacity to pump around 500,000 bpd, he added. That would give total capacity at around 13 million bpd.
    Crude capacity at the 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) Khurais oilfield was already on stream, although gas facilities were still incomplete, he said.
    The 900,000 bpd Moneefa oilfield would be completed in 2013, two years later than the initial schedule, but only if global demand for crude warranted, Naimi said.

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