OPEC and its non-OPEC allies (OPEC+), at the Ministerial Meeting Mar. 2, decided to continue the plan to raise the production target by 400,000 b/d for April, defying calls for more crude even as prices bounced to multi-year highs on concerns about supply disruptions in Russia. The decision, however, had been widely expected by analysts.
“Current oil market fundamentals and the consensus on its outlook pointed to a well-balanced market, and that current volatility is not caused by changes in market fundamentals but by current geopolitical developments,” OPEC+ said in a statement.
Oil prices rose on the news. Brent crude futures traded above $113/bbl, up around 8%, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures stood above $110/bbl, roughly 8% higher.
Ahead of the meeting, the International Energy Agency (IEA) reported a planned global coordinated Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) release of 60 million bbl. The release is expected to help offset energy market disruptions caused by international sanctions on Russia over its war with Ukraine. The US will account for around 30 million bbl.