*Latest data from Jodi confirm that Saudi Arabia’s crude exports soared to a two-year high of 8.235mn b/d for November, up over 530,000 b/d on October. The move came as Saudi Arabia was ramping up output ahead of setting a benchmark for December ‘Opec+’ meeting in which production allocations were set (MEES, 7 December 2018). Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih attributes the increase to buyers of Iranian crude having expected the US to deny import waivers from November (MEES, 9 November 2018).
*The only higher figure in recent times was in November 2016, that is to say the eve of the previous Opec output deal, when Saudi Arabia exported 8.258mn b/d (MEES, 20 January 2017). Going much further back, the only other month to top this was May 2003 (8.344mn b/d) when Saudi massively drew down stocks to boost exports to compensate for the loss of Iraqi volumes with the US invasion. (CONTINUED - 698 WORDS)