Oil production levels among Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries members and its allies need to rise to ease pressure on prices, according to the executive director of the International Energy Agency.
Speaking during the International Energy Forum in Riyadh on Feb. 16, Fatih Birol urged the group — known as OPEC+ — to do more to meet production targets.
According to the latest S&P Global Platts survey, published earlier this month, OPEC+ fell 700,000 barrels per day short of its collective quotas in January.
Reflecting on this, Birol said: “This gap is close to one million barrels per day, so, therefore, it will be important that the OPEC+ producers narrow this gap and hopefully provide more volumes to the market."
Birol also expressed his hope that additional oil output from the United States and Brazil will ease pressure on prices.
The director also warned that a drop in supply of gas is driving up prices of the commodity in Europe.
Birol said there is enough gas, but supplies to Europe have decreasedto about 25 percent this quarter, compared to previous years.
He added that this means storage levels are extremely low, and as a result, “gas prices brought lots of “burden” to the European economies.
With tensions growing around Russian forces massing on the country’s border with Ukraine, Birol urged world countries not to drag the energy industry into political tensions.