Zanganeh: No Pressure on Tehran to Join OPEC Cuts

OPEC and non-OPEC producers have pledged to cut 1.8 million bpd in supplies through March.OPEC and non-OPEC producers have pledged to cut 1.8 million bpd in supplies through March.

Nearly a year into the production-cut deal that brought together major OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said there was no pressure on Iran to join the cuts.

"No [there is no pressure]. We are complying with our commitment very well. We have more than 100% average compliance," Zanganeh told reporters on Wednesday ahead of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum ministerial meeting in Moscow, Platts reported.

Iran was granted a small increase in production under the deal signed on November 30, 2016.

Output cuts by OPEC and non-OPEC producers were "working well", and compliance was at an acceptable level, the oil minister added.

Iran's output in August was 3.83 million barrels per day and has averaged 3.78 million bpd over the first eight months since the deal came into effect in January, according to the latest S&P Global Platts OPEC survey released in September. This is 17,000 bpd below the country's official allocation of 3.79 million bpd.

The agreement requires OPEC and non-OPEC producers, led by Russia, to cut a combined 1.8 million bpd in supplies through March to hasten the market's rebalancing. The full OPEC/non-OPEC coalition is set to meet again on November 30 in Vienna.

Although there is a growing consensus on the need to continue the production cuts, at least until March, Zanganeh said that it was unclear how the producers planned to eventually exit from the deal and that it depended on a "collective discussion".

"I cannot predict what will happen but it seems that all OPEC countries are eager to stabilize the situation for the benefit of the market," Zanganeh said.

At the GECF meeting in Moscow, oil ministers from Qatar, Algeria, Russia and Iran, as well as delegates from Oman, Venezuela and Libya participated.

Iran has agreed to pump an average of 3.8 million barrels a day under the supply cut deal. Some officials and experts say producers should commit to deeper cuts to speed up the market's rebalancing.

Asked by reporters in Moscow whether an oil production-cutting deal should be extended beyond March, Zanganeh said, “We have not discussed with each other in this regard. But it seems that all the OPEC members believe that to make stability on the market ... it’s my sense that all are ready to do everything needed for this situation.”

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