Iraq’s oil ministry said the country produced an average total of 4.36 million
b/d of crude oil in January, down just 2,000 b/d from December, and putting it
just above its OPEC cut obligations, the latest data from the oil ministry
showed last week.

Federally owned oil companies produced a total of 4.224 million b/d, with
North Oil Co. contributing 169,000 b/d, another 207,000 b/d from Midland Oil
Co., 460,000 b/d from Missan Oil Co. and 181,000 b/d from Dhi-Qar Oil Co. The
largest contribution came from Basra Oil Co. at 3.207 million b/d, the data
showed.

The new data also includes production from the semi-autonomous Kurdistan
Regional Government, which the oil ministry estimated at just 136,000 b/d.

The country total of 4.360 million b/d is just 0.23% above Iraq’s OPEC
allocation of 4.350 million b/d. OPEC’s secondary source estimates, which
include S&P Global Platts, put January production at 4.435 million b/d, some
75,000 b/d above the oil ministry’s figure. Platts itself estimated January
output at 4.410 million b/d.

Its estimates for the KRG have fallen each month since July, when the oil
ministry said KRG output was 605,000 b/d, down to 136,000 b/d in January. The
latest number is more than 200,000 b/d below most estimates of KRG output at
340,000 b/d, a level the region has held steady since October.

The KRG itself has not published any figures for its production and exports
since November 2016. However, the estimate of KRG production at 340,000 b/d is
supported by the KRG’s export rate of around 280,000 b/d in January,
calculated from data obtained from shipping agents at the Mediterranean port
of Ceyhan and monitoring tanker movements.

Along with the lack of data on internal supply figures for the month, and
underestimated KRG output, this has left Iraq-watchers to guess what the
country’s true production rate is.

The addition of 340,000 b/d from the Kurdistan Region to the federal output of
4.224 million b/d, gives a country total of around 4.564 million b/d, some
214,000 b/d above Iraq’s allocation.

–Faleh Al-Khayat, newsdesk@spglobal.com

–Edited by Maurice Geller, maurice.geller@spglobal.com

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