The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will increase shipments by 60,000 barrels a day through to the middle of May because of rising demand in Asia, according to tanker tracker Oil Movements.
The group that supplies about 40 percent of the world’s oil will boost exports by 0.3 percent to 23.61 million barrels a day in the four weeks to May 11, the researcher said today in an e-mailed report. The figures exclude Angola and Ecuador.
“It’s all going east at the moment, which means that the Chinese are buying,” Roy Mason, the company’s founder said by phone from Halifax, England. “Westbound sailings from the Gulf are drooping.”
Middle East shipments will rise by 0.5 percent to 17.3 million barrels a day in the period, compared with 17.21 million in the four weeks to April 13, according to Oil Movements. That figure includes non-OPEC members Oman and Yemen.
While total OPEC sailings will probably increase in about a month as seasonal demand for driving fuels in the northern hemisphere climbs, the acceleration will probably be weaker than in previous years because of elevated levels of crude inventories held by refiners, Mason said.
Crude on board tankers will average 470.66 million barrels to May 11, up 0.6 percent from the previous period, Oil Movements’ data show. Oil Movements calculates the volumes by tallying tanker bookings. Its figures exclude crude held on vessels for storage.
OPEC’s members are Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela. The group will next meet on May 31 in Vienna to discuss output policy.