OPEC+ is expected to stick to its February production increase plan Reuters

© Reuters. File photo: April 14, 2020. In this illustration picture, a 3D printed oil pump jack can be seen in front of the displayed stock map and OPEC logo. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

Authors: Ahmad Ghaddar and Alex Lawler

London/Moscow (Reuters)-Four OPEC+ sources told Reuters that at the meeting on Tuesday, OPEC+ may stick to its plan to increase oil production in February because it expects that the Omicron coronavirus variant will have a short-term impact on demand Influence.

OPEC+ brings together the producers of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other oil-producing countries, including Russia, and has raised its monthly production target by 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) since August.

An OPEC+ source said: “OPEC+ will hold a relaxing meeting today, without any problems, and will reiterate the previous agreement.” The other three OPEC+ sources also agreed with this view.

The full OPEC+ meeting is scheduled to start at 1300 GMT. The Joint Ministerial Oversight Committee, which can make recommendations to the entire group, meets at 1200 GMT. Both meetings are virtual.

As demand and prices recover from the downturn caused by the pandemic, OPEC+ is lifting a record 10 million barrels per day production cut in 2020. It has risen by 50% last year, and has risen so far in 2022, with a transaction price of more than $79 on Tuesday. [O/R]

The current plan is for OPEC+ to increase its February target by 400,000 barrels per day again. According to the agreement reached in July last year, it will reduce production cuts by about 3 million barrels per day by September.

In a technical report seen by Reuters on Sunday, OPEC+ downplayed the impact of the Omicron variant on demand, saying it would be “moderate and short-lived” and was optimistic about the economic outlook.

“This is a supplement to the stable economic prospects of developed and emerging economies,” the Joint Technical Committee report stated.

Although OPEC+ has raised its production target every month, actual production has lagged because some member states are struggling with capacity restrictions.

The International Energy Agency said last month that OPEC+ oil-producing countries produced 730,000 barrels per day and 650,000 barrels per day in October and November, respectively. [IEA/M]

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