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OPEC+ Sticks to Course as Focus Shifts to Overproducers

– The Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee of OPEC+ has confirmed the oil group’s current production targets, pushing back against increasing calls for a reversal of output cuts on the back of Brent hitting $90 per barrel.

– Compliance with stipulated production targets is becoming a major sticking point for OPEC+ members, with the JMMC asking Iraq and Kazakhstan to present detailed compensation plans on how they would cut output in Q2.

– In total, OPEC+ produced 34.5 million b/d in February according to Platts, some 170,000 b/d above current quotas, even though Saudi Arabia and Russia have been both producing within their quotas.

– As oil prices soar on the heels of Middle Eastern tensions, Ukrainian drone strikes, and improving demand, OPEC+ will not be meeting until June 1, its next planned in-person meeting, when it should also finetune current production targets.

2. Once a Rising Natural Gas Star, Egypt Becomes an LNG Importer

– Egypt, a country that has historically suffered from paralyzing power blackouts in the summer and managed to retain its gas self-sufficiency thanks to the Zohr gas field, has started importing LNG again.

– Expected to receive an IMF bailout in excess of $50 billion, Egypt’s domestic natural gas production has been plummeting amidst structural declines.