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• Saudi Aramco drew down its crude inventories by 8.5mn barrels (293,000 b/d) in February, less than January’s bumper 11.4mn barrels (368,000 b/d) stock draw but still the second highest figure in almost four years.
• Coupled with crude output of 10.22mn b/d, the twelfth straight month over 10mn b/d, Saudi Arabia again supplied over 10.5mn b/d of crude to market for February, making January and February the two highest figures ever: last June’s record output of 10.564mn b/d was accompanied by a 200,000 b/d stock build (see chart 1).
• While stocks figures are not yet available for March, crude output remained at well over 10mn b/d – at 10.244mn b/d according to the country’s latest submission to Opec. And there is no sign of the record output run ending: Saudi Arabia was prepared to see the collapse of last weekend’s producers’ meeting in Doha rather than even pretend to compromise on its 18-month old ‘market share over price’ policy (see p11).
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