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OPEC to Raise Exports on Heating Fuel Demand, Oil Movements Says

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will increase crude shipments through this month as peak refinery capacity is restored to meet rising heating demand, according to tanker tracker Oil Movements.

OPEC, supplier of about 40 percent of the world’s oil, will boost sailings by 380,000 barrels a day, or 1.6 percent, to 24.14 million barrels in the four weeks to Dec. 28, the researcher said today in a report. That compares with 23.76 million in the period to Nov. 30. The figures exclude two of OPEC’s 12 members, Angola and Ecuador.

“We’re coming up to that peak in supply,” Roy Mason, the company’s founder, said by phone from Halifax, England. “It’s a seasonal event” as the start of winter in the Northern Hemisphere raises demand for heating oil, he said.

OPEC crude production dropped for a fourth month in November to 29.73 million barrels a day, driven by lower Libyan production, the International Energy Agency said in its oil market report published on Dec. 11. Brent futures have dropped about 2 percent this year, trading near $108.94 a barrel today.

Middle Eastern exports will increase 1 percent to 17.58 million barrels a day in the month to Dec. 28, compared with 17.41 million in the previous period, according to Oil Movements. The figures include non-OPEC nations Oman and Yemen.

Crude on board tankers will climb by 2.3 percent to 488.17 million barrels through Dec. 28 from 477.06 million in the previous period, data from Oil Movements show. The researcher calculates volumes by tallying tanker bookings and excludes 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.

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