Oil prices rise ahead of OPEC, China tariffs loom over United States prices


"Three OPEC founders are going to stop it", Iran's representative to the bloc Hossein Kazempour Ardebili said in comments to Bloomberg yesterday. On one side, under the USA influence [either in the form of alliance or sanctions] Saudi Arabia and non-OPEC-member Russian Federation, which had a significant role in reaching the deal, are said to be willing to ease the production cap and use some of their spare capacities.

Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday said India will raise the issue of the recent fuel price hike at the upcoming meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) countries in Vienna.

OPEC is up for a tough meeting in Vienna this week after the leaders of the two groups of the OPEC/NOPEC production cuts-Saudi Arabia and Russia-have signaled that they are willing to boost production to offset what is sure to be further supply disruptions, mostly from Venezuela's collapsing oil industry and from a potential decline in Iran's oil exports in view of the returning USA sanctions. Sharma expects output to climb whatever OPEC agrees.

Oil's market report for the month of June by EIA and Opec showing a stable demand growth while Non-Opec supply growth increased a bit.

The need to increase production emerged as Venezuela's production is in free fall and Iranian production is threatened by the re-imposition of US sanctions. Yet any output increase agreement could be muted because other OPEC members including Iraq said last week that production cuts should be maintained because prices still need support.

Oil prices slipped on Tuesday in volatile market conditions ahead of a meeting between major producers later this week to discuss pumping more.

In April-May, oil prices reached their four-year maximum.

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The market was expecting an increase of around 1-1.5 million barrels.

Two OPEC sources told Reuters that even Saudi Arabia's Gulf allies Kuwait and Oman were against big, immediate increases in output.

Expressing his optimism over regaining balance to the worldwide oil market, Al Mazrouei said: "Looking ahead, I remain optimistic that we will fulfil our goal of delivering sustainable oil market stability, which is meant to serve the long term interests of producers, consumers and the global economy". Venezuela experiences severe production outage, and already lost 350,000 barrels / day this year with the decline accelerating.

But a collapse in oil production in crisis-hit Venezuela and the prospect of fresh Iranian sanctions have raised fears of a supply crunch, sending the price of crude spiking again.

On Wednesday, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in a report that the rapidly rising growth of oil prices would likely ease soon. OPEC oil production increased by 35,000 barrels a day in May month on month to average 31.87 million barrels a day.

Adding to the tensions, Iran and Venezuela continued to insist that OPEC on Friday debate USA sanctions against the two countries, but the organisation's secretariat has rejected their requests, according to letters seen by Reuters.