Opec output dropped by more than 400,000 b/d in March, largely thanks to deep cuts by the group’s kingpin Saudi Arabia. In adhering to Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih’s recent pledges, Saudi output fell below 9.90mn b/d for the first time in four years (MEES, 22 March). If Mr Falih’s prognosis is correct, the kingdom’s output will fall slightly further this month before beginning to rise back up from May.

The result was that Opec production fell to 30.30mn b/d, its lowest level since February 2015 (see table). Such sizeable curtailments should help drain global inventory surpluses despite US production continuing to increase at a rapid click (see p20). (CONTINUED - 839 WORDS)