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OPEC to Cut Exports as Global Demand Falters, Oil Movements Says

April 18, 2013

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will reduce crude shipments this month as weakness in the global economy constrains demand and refiners finish maintenance, according to tanker tracker Oil Movements.

The group that supplies about 40 percent of the world’s oil will curb exports by about 220,000 barrels a day, or 0.9 percent, to 23.54 million a day in the four weeks to May 4, the researcher said today in an e-mailed report. The figures exclude Angola and Ecuador.

“It’s now demand-side risk that’s at last driving the market,” said Roy Mason, the company’s founder said by phone from Halifax, England. “We haven’t been in this situation for a few years. OPEC hasn’t had to cope with anything but scarcity for about five years. It’s a different world.”

Middle East shipments will decrease by 1 percent to 17.23 million barrels a day in the period, compared with 17.41 million in the four weeks to April 6, according to Oil Movements. That figure includes non-OPEC members Oman and Yemen.

The International Monetary Fund cut its growth forecast for 2013 on April 16. The world economy will expand 3.3 percent this year, less than the 3.5 percent forecast in January, after 3.2 percent growth in 2012, the Washington-based IMF said.

Crude on board tankers will average 472.14 million barrels, down 0.2 percent from the previous period, Oil Movements’ data show. Oil Movements calculates the volumes by tallying tanker bookings. Its figures exclude crude held on vessels for storage.

OPEC’s members are Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela.

To contact the reporter on this story: Grant Smith in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss on

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