OPEC stresses need for 2019 oil supply cuts as rivals pump more

In the report, OPEC said its oil output fell by 221,000 bpd month-on-month to 30.55 million barrels per day in February. (Reuters)
Updated 14 March 2019
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OPEC stresses need for 2019 oil supply cuts as rivals pump more

  • OPEC, Russia and other non-OPEC producers agreed in December to reduce output by 1.2 million bpd from January 1
  • OPEC said its oil output fell by 221,000 bpd month-on-month to 30.55 million bpd in February

LONDON: OPEC on Thursday cut the forecast of global demand for its crude this year as rivals boost production, building a case to extend a supply-cutting deal with Russia and other allies beyond the first half of 2019.
In a monthly report, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said 2019 demand for its crude would average 30.46 million barrels per day, 130,000 bpd less than forecast last month and below what it is currently producing.
OPEC, Russia and other non-OPEC producers, an alliance known as OPEC+, agreed in December to reduce output by 1.2 million bpd from Jan. 1 to prevent excess supply building up. The cut lasts for six months initially.
“While oil demand is expected to grow at a moderate pace in 2019, it is still well below the strong growth expected in the non-OPEC supply forecast for this year,” OPEC said in the report.
“This highlights the continued shared responsibility of all participating producing countries to avoid a relapse of the imbalance and continue to support oil market stability in 2019.”
OPEC sources have said an extension of the supply-cutting pact beyond June is the likely scenario. The group and its allies are due to meet in April and June to discuss policy.
In the report, OPEC said its oil output fell by 221,000 bpd month-on-month to 30.55 million bpd in February. That amounts to 105 percent compliance with pledged cuts, according to a Reuters calculation, up from January’s rate.


Apple’s Cook to China: keep opening for sake of global economy

Updated 23 March 2019
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Apple’s Cook to China: keep opening for sake of global economy

  • Cook’s comments come as Apple weathers sinking sales in China
  • Despite official pledges and repeated assurances that China would continue to open its markets

BEIJING: Apple chief executive Tim Cook nudged China on Saturday to open up and said the future would depend on global collaboration, as the United States and China remained locked in a bitter trade dispute.
“We encourage China to continue to open up, we see that as essential, not only for China to reach its full potential, but for the global economy to thrive,” Cook said at a China Development Forum in Beijing.
Despite official pledges and repeated assurances that China would continue to open its markets, some analysts worry that its reform project has slowed or even stalled under President Xi Jinping, who has sought greater control over the economy and a bigger role for state-owned firms at the expense of the private sector.
Cook’s comments come as Apple weathers sinking sales in China because of a contracting smartphone market, increasing pressure from Chinese rivals, and slowing upgrade cycles. The company reported a revenue drop of 26 percent in the greater China region during the quarter ending in December.
Before those results came out, in a January letter to investors, Cook blamed the company’s poor China performance on trade tension between the United States and China, suggesting that pressure on the economy was hurting sales in China.