Oil production from OPEC fell by 170,000 barrels per day (bpd) in December, according to data published by Reuters. OPEC supplied 31.62 million bpd to the market in December, down 0.5% from 31.79 million bpd in November.
Much of this decline in production came from Iraq, where near record high exports in November, mainly from the country’s southern terminals, fell away in December.
Despite this small drop in production, OPEC is still pumping almost 1.4 million bpd more than it did in 2014. With oil prices dropping below $35 per barrel this week, the market is still heavily oversupplied, with little prospect of prices rebounding.
Recent tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia have increased the strain within OPEC, further reducing the likelihood that the group will be able to agree of production quotas for its members. The cartel is currently split into two camps, those who want to defend their market share and continue with high production, and those who want supply cuts in order to boost prices.