The producer bloc meets Thursday in Vienna for fraught talks on new output cuts for 2019, with 10 key non-OPEC partners led by Russia joining the negotiations Friday.
Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s largest producer, pumped 11.02 million barrels per day in the period under review. This is the second month in a row the kingdom has set an all-time high in production, according to survey data.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE), came in second, boosting production to 3.30 million barrels per day in November, and also set a record for a second straight month, the survey found.
Iran however, took a 310,000 barrels per day hit in the month to average 2.98 million barrels per day in November, dropping the country behind the UAE to become OPEC’s fourth largest producer. This is the first time Iran’s output has fallen below 3 million barrels per day since January 2016, when the US sanctions were suspended by the nuclear deal.
United States re-imposed the sanctions on November 5, though Donald Trump US President has issued waivers to eight countries to continue buying Iranian oil through early May, leading many analysts to expect Iran’s production to rebound somewhat in the next few months.
Also, Iraq, OPEC’s second largest producer, pumped 4.57 million barrels per day in November. That was a 50,000 barrels per day drop from October, despite the resumption of federally controlled exports through the Kurdistan regional government’s pipeline, as bad weather affected loadings from the southern port of Basra.
Crisis-wracked Venezuela’s production dropped slightly to 1.17 million barrels per day in November. The country, which is suffering from high debt, hyperinflation and crumbling infrastructure, has seen its output plunge 630,000 barrels per day in a year and 900,000 barrels per day in two years.Qatar, which produced 610,000 barrels per day in November, announced Monday it is withdrawing from OPEC, effective January 2019.