The Opec+ collection of producers has sealed a deal which it claims will see it remove 9.7mn b/d from global supplies in May and June (MEES, 17 April) in a bid to offset an unprecedented collapse in demand. Thrown in with various less-than concrete external commitments, which largely rely on market forces rather than voluntary action, the producers dubiously claim oversupply will be eased by as much as 19.5mn b/d.

Leaving questionable counting to one side, there is one very clear flaw with the action. It won’t start until 1 May. And with the large Gulf producers having opened up the taps as soon as the 6 March Opec+ meeting dissolved into acrimony (MEES, 10 April), global stocks are already swelling. As IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol said when launching his agency’s latest Oil Market Report (OMR) on 15 April, we have already “lost two very important months.” (CONTINUED - 840 WORDS)