With Saudi crude data attracting more scrutiny than ever ahead of an informal meeting of Opec ministers in Algiers next week (see p9) there are indications that the two biggest domestic crude users – refining and power generation – will see their consumption fall markedly in the coming months. The key question is whether Saudi will maintain output at the current record 10.6mn b/d, and consequently push more crude exports onto an already saturated market, or take the opportunity to trim output.

July saw Saudi Arabia refinery output top 2.9mn b/d for the first time, with throughputs also at near record levels. However these figures are set to fall sharply in the fourth quarter this year. (CONTINUED - 1256 WORDS)