OPEC to Curb Exports on Refinery Maintenance, Oil Movements Says

Sept. 20 (Bloomberg) -- The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will reduce crude exports into next month as refiners start maintenance, according to Oil Movements.

OPEC, which accounts for about 40 percent of global oil supply, will export 23.66 million barrels a day in the four weeks to Oct. 6, down 0.7 percent from 23.83 million a month earlier, the tanker-tracker said today in its weekly e-mailed report. The data exclude Angola and Ecuador.

“It’s the end of summer and the beginning of the maintenance season,” Roy Mason, the researcher’s founder, said by telephone from Halifax, England. “The west enters first, the east next. By December, shipments are on their way back up again.”

Refiners often start repairs at this time of year as gasoline consumption slows after the peak summer driving season and before heating oil demand rises.

Exports from the Middle East, including non-OPEC members Oman and Yemen, will decrease by 1.1 percent to 17.27 million barrels a day in the four-week period, the report showed.

Crude on board tankers will average 471.82 million barrels, down 2.5 percent from 483.69 million in the previous period, the researcher said. Oil Movements calculates the volumes by tallying tanker-rental agreements. Its figures exclude oil held on board vessels as floating storage.

OPEC comprises Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela. The group plans to meet next on Dec. 12.

To contact the reporter on this story: Grant Smith in London at gsmith52@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss on sev@bloomberg.net